Daniel Harmon, PhD
Office: BST W1026-4A
Education and Training: Education: BS (Rice University), PhD (University of Virginia) Training: My graduate work in Coleen McNamara’s lab at the University of Virginia focused on understanding the role adipose tissue B cells play in obesity-associated inflammation. My research helped identify a unique subset of IgM-producing B1 B cells as important mediators of obesity-associated adipose tissue inflammation and insulin resistance. In addition, results from my project revealed the presence of a recently-described B1 B cell within human omental adipose tissue. I also collaborated on projects that identified important roles for B1 and B2 B cells in atherosclerosis and experimentally-induced abdominal aortic aneurysms, respectively.
Research Interest: I am interested in understanding how crosstalk between metabolic parameters and the immune system impact human disease. In the liver, chronic, low-grade inflammation is thought to disrupt metabolic signaling and contribute to co-morbidities associated with obesity. However, the signals that regulate immune cell recruitment to the liver, as well as functional roles for immune cell subsets within the liver, are poorly understood in the context of obesity. My projects in the O’Doherty lab include 1) identifying the role free fatty acids play in initiating hepatic inflammation and 2) characterizing the functional activity of dendritic cells that infiltrate the liver during obesity progression.
Selected Publication: Harmon DB, Srikakulapu P, Kaplan JL, Oldham SN, McSkimming C, Garmey J, Perry HM, Kirby JL, Prohaska TA, Gonen A, Hallowell P, Schirmer B, Tsimikas S, Taylor AM, Witztum JL, McNamara CA. Protective role for B-1b B cells and IgM in obesity-associated inflammation, glucose intolerance, and insulin resistance. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 36(4):682-691, 2016. (PMID: 26868208 PMCID: PMC4808436