INDIVIDUAL RESEARCHERPhillip J. Albrecht , Ph.D.
Education2001 - Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University
Current research: Peripheral mechanisms of chronic pain; epidermal nerve fiber/keratinocyte interactions Other research interests: neurodermatology cytokines, growth factors, neural effector molecules glial cells and CNS scar formation Summary: In collaboration with Dr. Frank L. Rice, my research efforts are investigating peripheral mechanisms of chronic pain conditions. Utilizing rodent models and human tissue from several disease states, the lab performs extensive evaluations of cutaneous innervation and keratinocyte chemistry. Our overall research objective is directed at understanding how peripheral innervation to the skin (and its appendages, including cutaneous vasculature), and the interactions of epidermal sensory endings with keratinocytes, may mediate several painful human diseases, including complex regional pain syndrome, post-herpetic neuralgia, scleroderma, neurofibromatosis, and diabetic neuropathy. Current research from our laboratory has indicated an extensive role of the epidermis in sensory transduction. We have demonstrated that epidermal keratinocytes express numerous neurotransmitters, neuropeptides, growth factors, cytokines, and their cognate receptors, and that these systems form a complex, integrated network of sensory signaling responsible for normal sensory perception. A major research effort in the lab is focused on understanding how the signaling mechanisms between keratinocytes and epidermal sensory fibers leads to normal cutaneous sensation, as well as how alterations of the signaling mechanisms can lead to the generation of pathologic intractable pain. Additional research interests focus on the effects of cytokine activation of astrocytes and glial scar formation, particularly the role of the Eph/efn tyrosine kinase family in mediating the interactions of astrocytes and meningeal fibroblasts at the CNS scar interface.
- Paré M, Albrecht PJ, Noto CJ, Bodkin NL, Pittenger GL, Schreyer DJ, Tigno XT, Hansen BC, Rice FL (2007). Differential hypertrophy and atrophy among all types of cutaneous innervation in the glabrous skin of the monkey hand during aging and naturally occurring type 2 diabetes. J Comp Neurol 501(4):543-67.
- Albrecht PJ, Hines S, Eisenberg E, Pud D, Finlay DR, Connolly MK, Paré M, Davar G, Rice FL (2006). Pathologic alterations of cutaneous innervation and vasculature in affected limbs from patients with complex regional pain syndrome. Pain 120: 244-266.
- Ibrahim MM, Porreca F, Lai J, Albrecht PJ, Rice FL, Khodorova A, Davar G, Makriyannis A, Vanderah TW, Mata HP, Malan TP Jr (2005). CB2 cannabinoid receptor activation produces antinociception by stimulating peripheral release of endogenous opioids. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 102(8): 3093-3098.
- Liberto CM, Albrecht PJ, Herx LM, Yong VW, Levison SW (2004). Pro-regenerative properties of cytokine-activated astrocytes. J Neurochem 89(5): 1092-1100.
- Albrecht PJ, Murtie JC, Ness JK, Redwine JM, Enterline JR, Armstrong RC, Levison SW (2003). Astrocytes produce CNTF during the remyelination phase of viral-induced spinal cord demyelination to stimulate FGF-2 production. Neurobiol Dis 13(2):89-101.