The University of Arizona

Eric Chase, MD

Assistant Professor, Emergency Medicine

Tara Carr, MD

Director, Adult Allergy Program
Program Director, Allergy Fellowship Training Program
Assistant Professor, Medicine

Biography: 

Dr Carr is a Board Certified Allergist/Immunologist with extensive specialty training in the evaluation and treatment of allergic and immunologic diseases in both children and adults. After attending medical school at the University of Virginia, she completed a residency in Internal Medicine and Fellowship in Allergy/Immunology at Northwestern University in Chicago. Since joining the faculty of the University of Arizona in 2011, she has established and leads the clinical Adult Allergy and Asthma Program and Allergy/Immunology Fellowship Program, supports pediatric and adult respiratory clinical research within the Arizona Respiratory Center, participates in steering committees of two large clinical research networks (AsthmaNet and American Lung Association-Airway Clinical Research Centers), and established our center as an inaugural member of the Food Allergy Research and Education Clinical Network. She holds a joint faculty appointment of Assistant Professor of Medicine and Otolaryngology at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center and is an Assistant Scientist at the Arizona Respiratory Center. As a clinician, she is passionate about treating patients with asthma, sinusitis, food allergy and all allergic/immunologic diseases. As a scientist, she is focused on understanding the heterogeneity of allergic disease pathogenesis and therapeutic outcomes, with an emphasis on translational research of inflammation and immune dysregulation.


Research Specialties: 

Gordon Carr, MD

Medical Director, Medical ICU – UAMC – South Campus
Assistant Professor of Medicine


Research Specialties: 

Janet Campion, MD, MPH, FACP

Associate Professor of Medicine

Biography: 

Dr. Janet Campion joined the Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine/Arizona Respiratory Center in 2010. She did her fellowship here in Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine and stayed on as faculty. In 2014 Dr. Campion became the Director for the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Program here at the University of Arizona. Dr. Campion’s fields of interest are Cystic Fibrosis patient care, education and research, interventional pulmonary patient care, education and research, teaching and developing teaching curriculum for pulmonary and critical care medicine; for medical students, residents, fellows and other health care professionals, serving in the Arizona Air National Guard and US Air Force as a Flight Surgeon and Critical Care Physician.

Research Specialties: 

Scott Boitano, PhD

Associate Research Scientist, Respiratory Sciences
Professor, BIO5 Institute
Professor, Cellular and Molecular Medicine
Professor, Physiology

Biography: 

The upper airway epithelium is an active cellular layer with ciliary movement to clear materials, the ability to secrete inflammatory effectors, and a biological barrier function that helps protect against pathogenic microorganisms, foreign insults and injury. Compromise of the upper airway epithelium and exposure of the underlying tissue has been associated with asthma, bronchitis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary distress syndrome as well as the increased susceptibility to pathogenic microorganisms, which can further exasperates airway diseases. Bordetella sp. are one of a variety of microbial pathogens that can overcome these defenses to infect human and animal species. Although much is known concerning the microbial genetics and microbial signaling of infection by Bordetella sp., relatively little is known about host cell pathology after exposure to Bordetella sp. We have a primary tissue culture system that serves as an in vitro model of airway cell signaling and communication, and a battery of B. bronchiseptica strains, some of which are mutant in key factors shown to inhibit their ability to establish infection in animal models. One focus of our research is to define specific pathogen factors that alter host cell physiology to initiate or overcome host cell defense. This focus includes the response of individual cells as well as multicellular defense through intercellular signaling.

The epithelial layer that lines the alveoli of the distal mammalian lung is made up of two distinct cell types, alveolar type I (AT1) and alveolar type II (AT2) cells. Although these cells are found in roughly equal numbers, AT1 cells cover 95% of the epithelial surface area. Physiological functions for AT1 cells include the primary site of gas exchange and for AT2 cells include the productions of critical secretions that keep the lung from collapsing. Just as importantly, AT2 cells serve as “stem cells” that divide, migrate and differentiate to reform the AT1/AT2 epithelial layer following insult or injury. Dysfunction of alveolar epithelial cells, as seen after airway injury, can have serious effects on lung physiology, (e.g. reduced O2 transfer, altered liquid interface, or misplacement of cell types at the lung surface that further exasperate the disease). Unfortunately, little is known concerning the cellular mechanisms that allow for alveolar cells to work together for normal lung function. We have recently used variations of extracellular matrices to develop a tissue culture model that includes both AT1 and AT2 cells in a single culture for an extended period (7 - 10 days). These cells express competent junctional components (i.e., both tight junctions and gap junctions) between and among both cell phenotypes. We currently are using a variety of molecular and cellular techniques to define and refine this tissue culture model and to study intercellular communication that contributes to alveolar repair after injury and disease. We believe that this model system for alveolar intercellular communication could expedite the formulating and testing of new medical treatments for dysfunctional alveolar cell physiology that underlies specific airway conditions following disease, insult and injury in the lung.

Research Specialties: 

John Bloom, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine

Research Specialties: 

Christian Bime, MD, MSc

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Biography: 

Dr. Christian Bime joined the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine/Arizona Respiratory Center in 2013 after completing his Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Fellowship training at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His research interests include: studying the genetic and non-genetic factors that contribute to health disparities in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS), identifying patient-specific genetic risk factors that underlie differential response to therapy, developing therapeutic response profiles that will guide a personalized approach to the management of ARDS and ultimately applying genomic medicine to clinical ARDS care. He hopes to identify patient-specific genetic risk factors that would ultimately lead to the application of genomic medicine in clinical care of patients with ARDS. Dr. Bime has joined the research laboratory of his mentor – Dr. Joe G.N. “Skip” Garcia to develop skills in molecular biology, genetics, genomics, and computational biology that will help him in his research career. Dr. Garcia has put together a strong mentorship panel to guide Dr. Bime through this process of preparing and submitting an NIH K-O1 application. Dr. Bime is currently funded by the Arizona Health Sciences Center-Career Development Award (AHSC-CDA) to generate preliminary data for his K-O1 application.Dr. Bime also studies the effect of exercise in modulating the inflammatory response in obese asthma patients and is currently funded by the Arizona Biomedical Research Commission (ABRC) for this project.


Research Specialties: 

Dean Billheimer, PhD

Associate Professor, Biometry, Epidemiology and Biostatics Division

Cristine Berry, MD, MHS

Assistant Professor of Medicine
Medical Director of Pulmonary Function and Exercise Physiology Laboratory

Biography: 

Cristine received her undergraduate education from the University of Arizona and obtained her medical degree from Johns Hopkins University.  She then completed both her medical residency and pulmonary/critical care fellowship at Johns Hopkins Hospital.  During her fellowship, she earned a master’s degree in clinical investigation from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.  After fellowship, she was on faculty at Johns Hopkins for one year before joining the UA Department of Medicine in 2013.  Last year, she received a career development award from the Arizona Health Sciences Center and an early stage investigator grant from the American Lung Association to support her research investigating the impact of early life exposures on lung function trajectory into adulthood.  In addition to her primary research focus, she conducts clinical trials in COPD and asthma, and she is also the medical director of the pulmonary function and exercise physiology laboratory.


Research Specialties: 

Paloma Beamer

Associate Professor, Public Health

Biography: 

Paloma I. Beamer, Ph.D., joined the College of Public Health at the University of Arizona in 2007. She is an environmental engineer by training and earned her BS from the University of California, Berkeley and her MS and PhD from Stanford University. Her research focuses on understanding how individuals are exposed to environmental contaminants and the health risks of these exposures with a special focus on vulnerable populations, including children, low-wage immigrant workers, and those in the US-Mexico Border Region. Dr. Beamer conducts field studies and uses both computer modeling and laboratory techniques in her research. The ultimate goal of her work is to develop more effective interventions and policies for prevention of avoidable cases of certain diseases such as asthma.

Dr. Beamer was awarded a K25 Mentored Quantitative Research Award from NHLBI to examine the relationship between environmental exposures and asthma precursors while receiving additional training in the biomedical sciences. She has also received a Scientific Technological Achievement Award (Level I) from the US EPA and Young Investigator Award from Yuma Friends of AHSC. She was selected as one of Tucson’s “40 under 40” and as an Emerging Investigator for an international journal, Environmental Science: Processes & Impact.

She is a lifetime member of the Society for Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) and the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS).

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