Defining Subsets of Sepsis

Millions of dollars and decades spent studying the inflammatory underpinnings of sepsis have reinforced the difficulty of addressing the “I” in SIRS, or systemic inflammatory response syndrome. Our research team is interested in both learning from and modeling how biomarkers can define the type and degree of inflammation in SIRS. Such knowledge will hopefully equip us with the information we need to make informed immunologic interventions.

In particular, a subset of septic patients has physiologic characteristics akin to macrophage activation syndrome (MAS). Through internal and extramural collaborations and careful model system interrogation, we will better define the borders of this sepsis/MAS overlap and hopefully define other kinds of sepsis amenable to immunologic treatment.

Heat map of serum cytokines comparing patients with NLRC4 and NLRP3-related inflammasome hyperactivity identified a cytokine signature anchored by IL-18.

Heat map of serum cytokines comparing individuals with NLRC4 and NLRP3-related inflammasome hyperactivity identified a cytokine signature anchored by IL-18.