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.
- University of California, San Diego - (San Diego, California, United States), Postdoctoral Training 1988
- Ph.D. in Biology, California Institute of Technology - (Pasadena, California, United States) 1983
- B.A. in Physics, Pomona College - (Claremont, California, United States) 1977
- Chen, W., Lamb, T. M., & Gomer, R. H. (2020). TGF-β1 increases sialidase 3 expression in human lung epithelial cells by decreasing its degradation and upregulating its translation. Experimental Lung Research. 46(3-4), 1-6.
- Tang, Y. u., & Gomer, R. H. (2020). An improved shotgun antisense method for mutagenesis and gene identification. BioTechniques. 68(3), 163-165.
- Karhadkar, T. R., Chen, W., & Gomer, R. H. (2020). Attenuated pulmonary fibrosis in sialidase-3 knockout (Neu3(-/-)) mice. American Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology. 318(1), L165-L179.
- Pilling, D., Cox, N., Thomson, M. A., Karhadkar, T. R., & Gomer, R. H. (2019). Serum Amyloid P and a Dendritic Cell–Specific Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-3–Grabbing Nonintegrin Ligand Inhibit High-Fat Diet–Induced Adipose Tissue and Liver Inflammation and Steatosis in Mice. American Journal Of Pathology. 189(12), 2400-2413.
- Suess, P. M., Chinea, L. E., Pilling, D., & Gomer, R. H. (2019). Extracellular Polyphosphate Promotes Macrophage and Fibrocyte Differentiation, Inhibits Leukocyte Proliferation, and Acts as a Chemotactic Agent for Neutrophils.. Journal of Immunology. 203(2), 493-499.
- Roife, D., Fleming, J. B., & Gomer, R. H. (2020). Fibrocytes in the Tumor Microenvironment. MATHEMATICAL MODELLING IN EXPERIMENTAL NUTRITION. Tumor Microenvironment. (pp. 79-85). Springer International Publishing.
- Gomer, R. H., & Pilling, D. (2011). Fibrocytes and Collagen-Producing Cells of the Peripheral Blood. Fibrocytes in Health and Disease. (pp. 17-27). World Scientific.
- Pilling, D., & Gomer, R. H. (2011). Regulatory Pathways of Fibrocyte Development. Fibrocytes in Health and Disease. (pp. 29-43). World Scientific.
- Pilling, D., & Gomer, R. H. (2007). Regulatory Pathways for Fibrocyte Differentiation. Fibrocytes. (pp. 37-60). World Scientific.
- Karhadkar, T. R., Chen, W., & Gomer, R. H. (2020). Attenuated pulmonary fibrosis in sialidase-3 knockout (Neu3−/−) mice. American Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology. 318(1), l165-l179.
- 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. Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging. 30(6), 1284-1288.
- 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. Cold Spring Harbor Symposia on Quantitative Biology. 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.
- Pentraxin regulation of macrophage differentiation awarded by National Institutes of Health 2014 - 2019
- Xiang, Wang (2018-08). Inhibiting Serum Amyloid P - Fc?R1 Interactions on Human Macrophages Decreases Numbers of Intracellular Mycobacteria. (Master's Thesis)
- Suess, Patrick Michael (2018-05). Insight into an Ancient and Enigmatic Molecule Using Dictyostelium discoideum. (Doctoral Dissertation)
- White, Michael (2015-05). Linking Fibrosis and Cancer through the Differentiation of Fibrocytes. (Doctoral Dissertation)
- Cox, Nehemiah (2015-05). Regulation of Innate Immune Responses and Fibrosis by Serum Amyloid P. (Doctoral Dissertation)
- Herlihy, Sarah E (2014-08). Linking Two Seemingly Unrelated Diseases, Cancer and Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Through a Dictyostelium Secreted Protein. (Doctoral Dissertation)