Our research group seeks to understand the genetic-environmental-immune interactions that take place to begin the autoimmune processes leading to multiple sclerosis (MS) and the individual-level heterogeneity that characterizes patients with this disease. Our studies focus on characterizing the immune state of individuals with the very earliest signs of MS and establishing the extent to which perturbations in specific micro-environments (e.g. the microbiome, CSF or adiopose tissue) impact the immune system and the presence of clinical symptoms. All of our efforts are concentrated on data and biospecimens collected from humans, with participant recruitment throughout the Northeast, but mainly in the Yale catchment region. We work with a wide range of collaborators at Yale and beyond to study the processes of immune activation and systemic inflammation in early stage MS. Projects in the lab may be purely clinical (related to clinical trial design and implementation or working with patient-related outcomes), or they may be collaborative and translational (related to deep immunologic analyses within the blood and other immunologic niches or to microbiome analysis). Recent tools include immunologic and biomarker analysis of cerebrospinal fluid and blood, advanced neuroimaging with MRI and low field MRI, clinical trials and 16S rRNA sequencing and global metabolomics.
Research and Training Opportunities
The Longbrake Lab is always interested in working with motivated postdocs, postgraduates, students, and other trainees on clinical and translational research projects. if you are interested in learning more about open positions and opportunities, please email Dr. Longbrake.