Respiratory Muscle Research Laboratory

Joseph Shrager Lab

Directed by Dr. Joseph Shrager in collaboration with Dr. Huibin Tang, PhD,  this laboratory is focused upon the responses of the respiratory muscles, in particular the diaphragm, to various disease states and interventions.  Most recently, this laboratory published the seminal paper establishing that even brief periods of mechanical ventilation cause marked atrophy of the diaphragm muscle fibers — presumably a major cause of "failure to wean" from the ventilator.  The lab is currently focused on elucidating the molecular mechanisms of this diaphragm atrophy with the intention of designing interventions that might be brought through animal models to the clinic.  This lab's work has been published in important journals, such as The New England Journal of Medicine, The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, and The American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. The lab is currently NIH funded and has also been supported by VA Merit Review grants and generous donors.

Rat under mechanical ventilation for in vivo studies on ventilator-associated diaphragm dysfunction