of Medicine and Dentistry. Dr. Lawrence’s research is focused on defining the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which environmental factors adversely affect the development and function of the immune system. This work includes the impact of acute exposure to environmental contaminants and pharmacological agents, as well as the consequences of prenatal (maternal) exposures on immune function in the next generation. Her work has shown that an environment-sensing transcription factor may have a complex mediating effect in the body, and results have demonstrated impacts on immune system function, including inflammatory responses and fighting viral infections. Dr. Lawrence has numerous peer-reviewed publications and professional awards, and serves on the editorial board for several toxicology journals. She has also served as a member of a science advisory panel for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and provides service to various review committees for the National Institutes of Health. She received her Ph.D. in cell biology from Cornell University in 1993, and postdoctoral training in immunology and toxicology at Oregon State University.
M. Louise Markert, M.D., Ph.D., is associate professor of pediatrics and immunology in the Division of Pediatric Allergy and Immunology at Duke University School of Medicine. Dr. Markert has pioneered the development of thymus transplantation for T cell reconstitution in infants born with complete DiGeorge anomaly. DiGeorge anomaly is a congenital disorder characterized by defects of the heart, parathyroid, and thymus. Complete DiGeorge anomaly is fatal because of the absence of functional thymus leading to profound primary immunodeficiency. In research protocols to date, 61 infants with complete DiGeorge anomaly have been transplanted with postnatal cultured human thymic epithelial tissue. Over 70 percent of these infants survive and have developed functional T cells. Dr. Markert graduated from Smith College with a B.A. in biochemistry and then completed the M.D./Ph.D. program at Duke University. She received her Ph.D. in immunology, completed a 2-year pediatric residency at Duke, and then a 3-year fellowship in pediatric allergy and immunology. Dr. Markert joined the Duke faculty in 1987. She was program director of the Duke NIH-funded General Clinical Research Center from 1993 to 2004. From 1996 to 2004, she served on the American Board of Allergy and Immunology and was chair of the Board in 2002. Dr. Markert has published over 40 research articles plus invited chapters and reviews.
Marc C. Patterson, M.D., is chair of the Division of Child and Adolescent Neurology and professor of neurology, pediatrics, and medical genetics at Mayo Clinic. Dr. Patterson is a child neurologist with special expertise in neurometabolic and neurogenetic disorders. His research has focused on neurometabolic disorders, with a particular focus on Niemann-Pick disease,