Thomas W. Ferkol, M.D.

Pediatric Allergy, Immunology & Pulmonary Medicine
Cell Biology and Physiology

Molecular Cell Biology Program

  • 314-454-2694

  • 314-286-2875

  • 314-286-2886

  • 314-286-2895

  • 8117 Northwest Tower


  • cilia, epithelial cells, genetics, host-pathogen interactions, imaging

  • study of inflammatory airway diseases

Research Abstract:

Dr. Ferkol’s research has focused on the development of epithelial cell and animal models to study cystic fibrosis, defining genetic and molecular factors that contribute to airway infection, inflammation, and injury. He has used these models to examine the effects of bacterium-epithelium interaction in the cystic fibrosis airway and study non-invasive measures of inflammation in the cystic fibrosis lung, programs supported by the National Institutes of Health, March of Dimes, and Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. In addition, he and his collaborators have developed novel approaches for airway-specific drug delivery. These projects could yield better assessment tools and alternative treatment strategies for suppurative lung diseases in children.

Dr. Ferkol serves as an investigator for the National Institutes of Health-supported Genetic Diseases of Mucociliary Clearance Consortium, a clinical research network to study rare diseases of the airways, including cystic fibrosis and primary ciliary dyskinesia. He has formed a highly productive, multidisciplinary research collaborative that has been defining clinical and functional phenotypes of patient subpopulations with known or suspected primary ciliary dyskinesia. By assembling clinical and scientific expertise from across the campuses at Washington University, he and his colleagues have been able to model the genetic, structural, and functional spectrum of ciliopathies in flagellated algae and airway epithelial cells, which is leading to better understanding of the relationship between genetic and clinical phenotypes, and identification of therapeutic agents to restore ciliary motility.

Selected Publications:

Farberman M, Joseph T, Akers K, Medina-Garcia R, Seth Crosby S, Clarke LL, Brody SL, Ferkol TW: Expression and polarized release of CXC-chemokines from differentiated primary cultures of wild type and cystic fibrosis murine airway epithelial cells. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol. 2011;45:221-8.

Ferkol T, Leigh M: Pediatric ciliopathies: the central role of cilia in a spectrum of pediatric disorders. J Pediatr. 2012;160:366-71.

Horani A, Druley TE, Zariwala MA, Levinson BT, Van Arendonk LG, Thornton KC, Giacalone JC, Albee AJ, Wilson KS, Turner EH, Nickerson DA, Shendure J, Patel AC, PV, Leigh MW, Knowles MR, Brody Sl, Dutcher SK, Ferkol TW: Whole exome capture and sequencing identifies HEATR2 mutation as a cause of primary ciliary dyskinesia. Am J Hum Genet. 2012;91:685-93.

Knowles MR, Leigh MW, Ostrowski LE, Huang L, Carson JL, Hazucha MJ, Yin W, Berg JS, Davis SD, Dell SD, Ferkol TW, Rosenfeld M, Sagel SD, Milla CE, KN Oliver, Turner H, Mackenzie AL, Bamshad M, Nickerson DA, Shendure J, Zariwala MA: Exome sequencing identifies CCDC114 as a novel gene causing primary ciliary dyskinesia associated with defective outer dynein arms. Am J Hum Genet. 2013;92:99-106.

Antony D, Becker-Heck A, Zariwala MA, Schmidts M, Onoufriadis A, Forouhan M, Wilson R, Cox T, Dewar A, Jackson C, Goggin P, Loges NT, Olbrich H, Jaspers M, Jorissen M, Leigh MW, Wolf WE, Daniels LM, Noone PG, Ferkol TW, Sagel SD, Rosenfeld M, Rutman A, Dixit A, O’Callaghan C, Lucas JS, Hogg C, Emes R, Chung EMK, Shoemark A, Knowles MR, Omran H, Mitchison HM: Mutations in CCDC39 and CCDC40 are the major cause of primary ciliary dyskinesia with axonemal disorganization and absent inner dynein arms. Hum Mutat. 2013;34:462-72.

Horani A, Ferkol TW, Shoseyov D, Wasserman M, Cohen-Cymberknoh M, Dutcher SK, Brody SL, Elpeleg O, Kerem E: LRRC6 mutation causes primary ciliary dyskinesia with dynein arm defects. PLOS One. 2013;8:e59436

Ferkol TW, Puffenberger EG, Lie H, Helms C, Strauss KA, Bowcock A, Carson JL, Hazucha MJ, Morton DH, Leigh MW, Knowles MR, Zariwala MA: Primary ciliary dyskinesia-causing mutations in Amish and Mennonite communities. J Pediatr. 2013. In press.

Davis SD, Ferkol T: Identifying the origins of cystic fibrosis lung disease. New Engl J Med. 2013. In press.

Cohen-Cymberknoh M, Kerem E, Ferkol T, Elizur A: Airway inflammation in cystic fibrosis: molecular mechanisms and clinical implications. Thorax 2013. In press.

Horani A, Brody SL, Ferkol TW, Shoseyov D, Wasserman MG, Ta-shma A, Wilson KS, Bayly PV, Amirav I, Cohen-Cymberknoh M, Dutche SK, Elpeleg O, Kerem E. CCDC65 mutation causes primary ciliary dyskinesia with normal ultrastructure and hyperkinetic cilia. PLOS One. 2013; in press.

Last Updated: 7/29/2013 2:59:27 PM

Back To Top

Follow us: