Dr. Fujio Suzuki, Professor of Internal Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases at UTMB, is also a member of the Scientific Staff at Shriners Hospitals for Children. Dr. Suzuki has had more than 30 years experience in researching host antimicrobial and anticancer functions, and he is currently developing several research projects. The major focus of his research is immunological intervention of infections in persons who have suffered severe burn injuries or radiation associated damage to their gastrointestinal system. In burn patient studies, he is working with Dr. David N. Herndon (Professor of Surgery and Chief of Staff at Shriners) and his research team. In the study of gene knockdown therapy for gut bacteria-associated sepsis, he is working with Dr. Michael Cornforth (Professor of Radiation Oncology) and his group. Dr. Suzuki is also participating in studies conducted by Dr. Johnny W. Peterson (Professor of Microbiology and Immunology) and Dr. Ashok K. Chopra (Professor of Microbiology and Immunology) titled "Small Animal Model Development and Proof-of-Concept Testing of Therapeutics and Vaccines for Antimicrobial Resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa Bactermia and Candida Fungemia."
In addition, Dr. Suzuki is studying the pathogenesis of MRSA infection in abscess models with Dr. Akira Asai, a McLaughlin postdoctoral fellow; the immunological intervention of Pseudomonas aeruginosa burn wound infection by recovering antimicrobial peptide production with Dr. Herndon's research team, Vickie C. Jones, MS, and Shohei Yoshida, Pharmacist, collaborating with Dr. Tokuichiro Utsunomiya, Minophagen Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., Japan; and the immunointervention of Th17 cells for the control of Candida albicans infection in severely burned patients with Dr. Akihito Inatsu (a research fellow). Dr. Makiko Kobayashi (Associate Professor of Internal Medicine and Scientific Staff at Shriners) is extensively collaborating with Dr. Suzuki in all projects currently performed in his laboratory.
Dr. Suzuki's research focuses on gut bacteria-associated sepsis in persons who have suffered with severe burn injuries or radiation-associated damage in gastrointestinal systems. Also, he has studied gene therapy for Enterococcus faecalis and Staphylococcus aureus infections in immunocompromised hosts. Pathogenesis of MRSA infection in abscess models, immunointervention of Pseudomonas aeruginosa burn wound infection, impaired antimicrobial peptide production, Th17 cells-associated anti-Candida host resistance, biology of suppressor neutrophils and M2 macrophages, and development of humanized SCID chimera models for translational studies of burn-associated infections are being investigated in his laboratory. We are also working on developing mouse models for Cryptosporidium parvum infections.