Our goal is to understand the properties of various polymeric, soft matter, and biological systems and to design new systems with even more interesting and useful properties. Our approach is based upon building and solving simple molecular models, as well as designing and performing experiments to test these models. Computer simulations of our models serve as an important bridge between analytical calculations, molecular modeling, and experiments.
Mucus clearance is the primary defense mechanism that protects airways from inhaled infectious and toxic agents. We demonstrated a strong correlation between the extent of the chronic bronchitis disease and the state of hydration of the airway surface layer – mucus concentration and the corresponding osmotic pressure. We are using these ideas to develop biomarkers and treatment strategies for patients with different airway diseases.