The research in the Mauro’s group focuses on the interconnections between metabolic and inflammatory pathways and how systemic and cellular metabolic alterations in diseases with an inflammatory component lead to aberrant immune cell responses, which favour both the establishment and the propagation of inflammation. In particular, they investigate the mechanisms of metabolic control of T cell-mediated immune responses, including migration, differentiation and cytokine production in physiology and under metabolic stress.
One key area of their research is how small metabolites, like lactate, which accumulates locally in the inflamed tissue or systemically during acute and chronic inflammation, can impact the fate of the immune-inflammatory response via induction of intracellular metabolic rewiring with immediate effect on broad range human diseases.
Another important aspect of their research is how fatty acids can impact the outcomes of an immune response, with repercussions on obesity-related diseases.
Their studies indicate that interfering with metabolic pathways (i.e., lipid, glucose and oxidative metabolism) alters immune cell effector functions and can be exploited for therapy (Plos Biol 2015, Trends Biochem Sci 2016, Immunity 2017, Cell Metab 2017, Nat Commun 2017, Cardiov Res 2019, Cell Metab 2019, Nat Commun 2020, Brit J Pharmacol 2020, Nat Rev Immunol 2020).