Physiology research has been an important element of our school for a century. The intersections of lung physiology and mechanics were first brought to clear fruition here in the early part of the twentieth century by the Drinker brothers, when Philip the engineer and Cecil the physician combined their talents to invent the iron lung. Around the middle of the century, Jim Whittenberger recognized the need to better understand lung biology before we could anticipate and interpret how environmental exposures threatened our health, and he was perhaps the first to include a program in physiology research in a department of environmental health. A crucial early recruitment of his was Jere Mead, who elucidated the mechanics of respiration through the middle and later parts of the century. In the late 1960s, Joe Brain began extending levels of lung biology analyses from organism and organs to cell and molecules. In the present, we are elucidating lung biology at ever more sophisticated levels of molecular detail, with unprecedented abilities to integrate this knowledge with cell, organ, organism, and population biology. The interdisciplinary nature of our earliest research, particularly the intersections of biology and engineering, continues to be a hallmark of our program. While excited about what we are now doing and planning, we are also proud of what our program has accomplished.
Molecular and Integrative Physiological Sciences