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Welcome to Our Laboratory:
Mucosal Immunopathology of Arthritis

The central hypothesis of our laboratory is that commensal microbes at the intestinal mucosal surface modulate local adaptive immune responses that affect the development of autoimmunity. We utilize a diversity of research methods from animal models to human tissues, as well as participate in a larger, highly-collaborative environment that includes individuals from rheumatology, gastroenterology, immunology, microbiology, molecular biology, and biochemistry. We have utilized biospecimens from individuals with Inflammatory Bowel Diseases like Crohn's and Ulcerative Colitis, Spondyloarthritis, and Rheumatoid Arthritis to identify unique bacterial and metabolic signatures that influence immune functions. We also integrate murine models of autoimmune arthritis and bowel inflammation into our work. Our group has developed methods of isolating, identifying, and transferring primary bacterial strains from mice and humans with disease into germ free mice to interrogate the immunologic consequences. More recently we have developed methods to manipulate bacterial metabolism in mice to investigate the impacts on immune functions. These models have become central to taking our observations from human to mechanistic investigations into how specific commensal bacteria affect adaptive immunity in autoimmunity.

A little about Dr. Kristi Kuhn

I am the Scoville Endowed Chair and Head of the Division of Rheumatology and an Associate Professor of Medicine and of Immunology and Microbiology at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, CO. I received my MD and PhD in Immunology at the University of Colorado. I then completed Internal Medicine residency, chief residency, and Rheumatology fellowship at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University in St. Louis. In 2013 I returned to the University of Colorado to establish my independent research program focused on specific intestinal microbe-mucosal interactions that influence the generation of systemic inflammation and the development of spondyloarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. 

My passions include mentoring, especially in research and helping others see the possibilities in their careers whether inside or out of academia. As a result, I have served on >15 mentorship committees and worked with an equal number of individuals during career stage transitions. To improve my mentorship skills, I engage in numerous workshops focused on being a mentor and in issues around diversity, equity, and inclusion (5 hours in the past year).


1775 Aurora Ct, Aurora, CO 80045, USA

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