Vinay Penna

Program: Immunology

Current advisor: Kory J. Lavine, MD, PhD

Undergraduate university: Washington University

Research summary
This past summer I worked in the lab of Dr. Kory Lavine. The lab is focused on understanding the role of different monocyte/macrophage populations within the heart in the context of both normal homeostasis as well as disease states. In general there appear to be two different subsets of macrophages within the heart: C-C chemokine receptor type 2 (CCR2) negative macrophages which are derived from embryonic precursors before birth and CCR2 positive macrophages, which enter the heart later in life. These two distinct subtypes appear to have different impacts on post injury recovery during cardiac disease and damage. My project currently focuses on understanding the role of these macrophages in the setting of Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy (ARVC), a form of heart disease caused by mutations in desmosomes of cardiomyocytes. I have performed CITE-seq on mouse models of ARVC and am in the processing of assessing the cellular landscape of the disease, specifically looking at the interactions between macrophages and fibroblasts.  mice in order to subsequently analyze differences between them via bulk RNA-seq.

Graduate publications
Bailey AL, Dmytrenko O, Greenberg L, Bredemeyer AL, Ma P, Liu J, Penna V, Winkler ES, Sviben S, Brooks E, Nair AP, Heck KA, Rali AS, Simpson L, Saririan M, Hobohm D, Stump WT, Fitzpatrick JA, Xie X, Zhang X, Shi PY, Hinson JT, Gi WT, Schmidt C, Leuschner F, Lin CY, Diamond MS, Greenberg MJ, Lavine KJ. 2021 SARS-CoV-2 Infects Human Engineered Heart Tissues and Models COVID-19 Myocarditis. JACC Basic Transl Sci, 6(4):331-345.