University of Vermont

College of Medicine

Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine


Mossman Lab Research

Fields of Specialization

Environmental toxicology, epithelial cell differentiation, chemical and physical carcinogenesis and cell injury, pulmonary fibrosis, oxygen free radicals, molecular biology of antioxidant enzymes in lung, cell signaling

Overview of Current Areas of Research and Approaches

  • Epithelial Control of Lung Inflammation
  • Epithelial Signaling in Fibrosis
  • Asbestos and Silica in Environmental Lung Diseases, Including Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer

The Mossman laboratory is focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms and pathogenesis of lung cancers, mesothelioma and pulmonary fibrosis (asbestosis) associated with occupational and environmental exposures to different types of asbestos fibers. Most recently, we have been exploring critical asbestos- and oxidant-induced signaling and survival pathways (Mitogen Activated Protein Kinases, NF-κB, PKB/AKT) in human mesothelial and rodent lung epithelial cells in vitro, in a rodent inhalation model of asbestos-induced cell injury and in a nude mouse xenograft model with human mesothelioma cells. We are also involved in translational studies using human mesotheliomas and tissue arrays on an inter-institutional program project grant and are developing new strategies for therapeutic inhibition of these tumors using nanoparticles and siRNA approaches.


  1. Dostert C, Pétrilli V, Van Bruggen R, Steele C, Mossman BT, and Tschopp J: Innate immune activation through Nalp3 inflammasome sensing of asbestos and silica. Science 320:674-677, 2008 PMCID: PMC2396588
  2. Buder-Hoffmann SA, Shukla A, Barrett TF, Lounsbury KM, and Mossman BT: A protein kinase C{delta}-dependent protein kinase D pathway modulates ERK1/2 And JNK1/2 phosphorylation and Bim-associated apoptosis by asbestos. Am J Pathol 174:449-459, 2009 PMCID: PMC2630554
  3. Shukla A, MacPherson MB, Hillegass JM, Ramos-Nino ME, Alexeeva V, Vacek PM, Bond JP, Pass HI, Steele C, and Mossman BT: Alterations in gene expression in human mesothelial cells correlate with mineral pathogenicity. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol 41:114-123, 2009 PMCID: PMC2701958
  4. Shukla A, Bosenberg MW, Macpherson MB, Butnor KJ, Heintz NH, Pass HI, Carbone M, Testa JR, and Mossman BT: Activated cAMP response element binding protein is overexpressed in human mesotheliomas and inhibits apoptosis. Am J Pathol 175:2197-2206, 2009 PMCID: PMC2774081
  5. Hillegass JM, Blumen SR, Cheng K, Macpherson MB, Alexeeva V, Lathrop SA, Beuschel SL, Steinbacher JL, Butnor KJ, Ramos-Niño ME, Shukla A, James TA, Weiss DJ, Taatjes DJ, Pass HI, Carbone M, Landry CC, and Mossman BT: Increased efficacy of doxorubicin delivered in multifunctional microparticles for mesothelioma therapy. Int J Cancer 129:233-244, 2011 PMCID: PMC3017728

Last modified June 11 2012 12:19 PM