Janet M. Wenzlau, PhD
Instructor Department of Pediatrics, Barbara Davis Center
BioSketch [ List of Publications ]
My research interests are focused on the analysis of humoral autoimmune responses in Type 1 Diabetes. Autoantibodies are typically targeted to antigens which display high beta-cell specific expression, are components of the regulated secretory pathway, and contain trans-membrane domains. Utilizing a combined bioinformatic/molecular engineering strategy to define potential targets of T1D autoantibodies, we identified ZnT8 as a key autoantigen. We have developed and optimized radioimmunoprecipitation assays (RIAs) to detect ~65% of newly diagnosed patient sera containing ZnT8 autoantibodies (ZnT8A). Since ZnT8 is beta-cell specific it is an ideal candidate to monitor beta cell mass and engineer antigen-based regimens to induce tolerance as off-target complications would be minimal. Towards these goals we are molecularly mapping its major epitopes and characterizing its utility as a measure of disease progression.
Grijse JD, Asanghanwa M, Alrecher N, Goubert P, Vermeulen I, Vand Der Meeren S, Decodhex K, Weets I, Keymeulen B, Lampasona V, Wenzlau J, Hutton JC, Pepeleers D, Gorus FK and the Begian Deabetes Registry. Predictive power of screening for antibodies against IA2(beta) and zinc transporter-8 to select first-degree relatives of type 1 diabetic patients with rapid progression to clinical onset of the desease. Implications for prevention trials. Submitted.
Wenzlau JM, Walter M, Gardner T, Frisch L, Yu L, Eisenbarth G, Ziegler A, Davidson HW, Hutton, JC. Kindetics of zinc transport 8 autoantibodies following clinical onset of type 1 diabetes in humans. Submitted.