Itch Studies

Summary

The Kim Lab was the first to identify how IL-4 and IL-13 directly stimulate sensory neurons to promote atopic itch. Furthermore, these studies uncovered previously unrecognized roles for Janus kinases (JAKs) in modulating neuronal cytokine signaling. These studies have changed the paradigm of how we interpret the efficacy of new watershed treatments such as monoclonal antibodies like dupilumab and JAK inhibitors for atopic dermatitis and itch.  We currently have a number of projects investigating how these pathways modulate the sensory nervous to alter itch sensation. Our overall goal is to understand the spatiotemporal mechanisms by which immune cells and cytokines directly regulate the sensation of itch.