Amid Covid-19 pandemic, Dr. Oliveira’s project entitled “Role of Caveolin-1 and BMPRII Short Form in Pulmonary Vascular Homeostasis” is one of the 7 catalyst awards selected this year by American Lung Association at a national level. This award champions the next generation of scientists who are ascending toward independence, conducting basic science, behavioral, clinical, or translational research into lung health.
The focus of Dr. Oliveira’s project is on Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), a life-threatening disease characterized by progressive narrowing of the lung blood vessels. During PAH, the remodeling of the pulmonary vasculature gradually raises blood pressure in the lungs, which eventually lead to premature death from heart failure. PAH emerges from different conditions, including genetic mutations or HIV and Schistosoma mansoni infection, but in some cases the cause is unknown. Together with her mentor, Dr. Minshall, Dr. Oliveira studies the role of inflammation and oxidative stress on the function of Caveolin-1 and BMPR2, and how the loss of these proteins promote abnormal changes to vascular endothelial cells during PAH.