Regulatory Molecules of Inflammatory Processes
T cells and their immunomodulatory receptors have emerged in the last decade as a solid improvement in treatments for various types of cancer. However, the role of these molecules in the therapeutic context of autoimmune and cardiovascular diseases is still very little explored.
Our group seeks to study the therapeutic and diagnostic potential of T cells, their immunomodulatory receptors and microRNAs, in the management of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and in the development of precision medicine tools. We aim to improve targeted diagnosis and treatment of CVD, specifically, myocarditis, acute myocardial infarction and atherosclerosis.
T lymphocytes are pivotal in the development of CVD and, together with certain microRNAs have been shown to be altered in blood and cardiovascular tissues during their progression. Our research has contributed to established a protective role of regulatory T (Treg) cells in the development of atherosclerosis, acute myocardial infarction and myocarditis, being Th17 cells triggers of these CVD. We have described that Th17/Treg cells balance drives the development of atherosclerosis by controlling the inflammation in the plaques at the early stages of the disease, in mice and humans. These data unravel Treg cells and their immunomodulatory receptors as potential therapeutic tools for atherosclerosis and myocardial damage after an ischemic event. Moreover, the group has recently patent novel circulating microRNAs for the diagnosis of myocarditis and the treatment of cardiomyopathies.