Gomer, Richard individual record

Our laboratory is working on three areas of biomedicine, trying to move observations from basic research into the clinic. First, we are studying how the sizes of tissues and tumors are regulated, and how this can be manipulated for therapeutic purposes. As a model system, we are using the simple eukaryote Dictyostelium discoideum, which allows us to combine techniques such as biochemistry, genetics, computer modeling, and cell biology to study tissue size regulation. We have found that a secreted protein as well as the unusual molecule polyphosphate are signals in negative feedback loops that inhibit Dictyostelium cell proliferation, and we are studying the signal transduction pathway to understand similar mechanisms in humans.

Second, we are studying how some secreted proteins can make cells move away from the source of the signal. We found such a signal (called a chemorepellent) in Dictyostelium, and then found a similar signal in humans. We are working to understand the signal transduction pathway for both. The human signal repels neutrophils, and we found that this can be used therapeutically in mouse models of neutrophil-driven diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Third, we have found that a human blood protein called Serum Amyloid P (SAP) regulates a key step in the formation of scar tissue as well as the formation of the scar-like lesions in fibrosing diseases such as congestive heart failure and pulmonary fibrosis. We are studying this mechanism, and a biotech company (Promedior) we co-founded is testing SAP as a therapy for fibrosis in patients in two Phase 2 trials.

selected publications
Academic Articles153
  • Kirolos, S. A., Rijal, R., Consalvo, K. M., & Gomer, R. H. (2021). Using Dictyostelium to Develop Therapeutics for Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome. Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology. 9, 710005.
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  • Karmakar, R., Tyree, T., Gomer, R. H., & Rappel, W. (2021). Cell dispersal by localized degradation of a chemoattractant.. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 118(6), e2008126118.
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  • Pilling, D., Karhadkar, T. R., & Gomer, R. H. (2021). High-Fat Diet-Induced Adipose Tissue and Liver Inflammation and Steatosis in Mice Are Reduced by Inhibiting Sialidases.. Am J Pathol. 191(1), 131-143.
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  • Karhadkar, T. R., Meek, T. D., & Gomer, R. H. (2021). Inhibiting Sialidase-Induced TGF-β1 Activation Attenuates Pulmonary Fibrosis in Mice.. J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 376(1), 106-117.
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  • Rijal, R., Cadena, L. A., Smith, M. R., Carr, J. F., & Gomer, R. H. (2020). Polyphosphate is an extracellular signal that can facilitate bacterial survival in eukaryotic cells.. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 117(50), 31923-31934.
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  • Roife, D., Fleming, J. B., & Gomer, R. H. (2020). Fibrocytes in the Tumor Microenvironment.. MATHEMATICAL MODELLING IN EXPERIMENTAL NUTRITION. Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology. 79-85. Springer International Publishing.
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  • Gomer, R. H., & Pilling, D. (2011). Fibrocytes and Collagen-Producing Cells of the Peripheral Blood. Fibrocytes in Health and Disease. 17-27. World Scientific.
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  • Pilling, D., & Gomer, R. H. (2011). Regulatory Pathways of Fibrocyte Development. Fibrocytes in Health and Disease. 29-43. World Scientific.
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  • Pilling, D., & Gomer, R. H. (2007). Regulatory Pathways for Fibrocyte Differentiation. Fibrocytes. 37-60. World Scientific.
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Conference Papers6
  • Karhadkar, T. R., Chen, W., & Gomer, R. H. (2019). Attenuated pulmonary fibrosis in sialidase-3 knockout (Neu3−/−) mice. American Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology. 318(1), l165-l179.
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  • Karhadkar, T. R., Pilling, D., Cox, N., & Gomer, R. H. (2018). Sialidase Inhibitors Attenuate Pulmonary Fibrosis in a Mouse Model. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF RESPIRATORY AND CRITICAL CARE MEDICINE. 197,
  • Vakil, V., Sung, J. J., Piecychna, M., Crawford, J. R., Kuo, P., Abu-Alfa, A. K., ... Gomer, R. H. (2009). Gadolinium-containing magnetic resonance image contrast agent promotes fibrocyte differentiation.. J Magn Reson Imaging. 30(6), 1284-1288.
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  • de Paula, R. M., Vitalini, M. W., Gomer, R. H., Bell-Pedersen, D., & Press, C. (2007). Complexity of the Neurospora crassa Circadian Clock System: Multiple Loops and Oscillators. CLOCKS AND RHYTHMS. 72, 345-351.
  • Skidmore, W., Horne, K., Pearson, K., Gomer, R., O'Brien, K., & Oke, B. (2004). Rapid keck spectroscopy of cataclysmic variables. Revista Mexicana de Astronomia y Astrofisica: Serie de Conferencias. 20, 155-157.
chaired theses and dissertations
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mailing address
Texas A&M University; Biology; 3258 TAMU
College Station, TX 77843-3474