Dr. Rachel Caspi PhD
Chief, Laboratory of Immunology
Head, Immunoregulation Section
National Eye Institute, NIH
Bethesda (MD) | USA
I am a tenured senior investigator, Section Head and Chief of the Laboratory of Immunology, National Eye Institute, NIH. I also hold an Adjunct Professor appointment at the University of Pennsylvannia Sch. Med. My research centers onimmunological processes affecting immunity and autoimmunity in the eye, especially the neuroretina. My lab has developed animal models that represent autoimmune uveitis, a sight threatening disease in humans. These models have been used by our lab and our coleagues worldwide to dissect ocular immune privilege and adaptive effector mechanisms in autoimunity to neuroretina, to study basic mechanisms of uveitis and as a platform to develop therapeutic approaches. Our current work emphasizes the role of the gut microbiome in induction and development of autoimmune uveitis. An area of recent interest is also mucosal immunology of the ocular surface and the role of commensal bacteria in local ocular immune homeostasis and host defense.