Research Interests


  • The role of the innate immune system in regulating pathologic angiogenesis
  • The effects of senescence on macrophage gene regulation
  • Oxidative stress, inflammation and the regulation of cell death in models of macular degeneration
  • Regulation of photoreceptor cell death by inflammation
  • The role of innate immune cells in aging and disease
  • Molecular regulation of uveitis



Lab News

8/23/2021: Congratulations, Andrea Santeford MS, Dr. Rajendra Apte MD PhD and colleagues on their latest publication, “Loss of Mir146b with aging contributes to inflammation and mitochondrial dysfunction in thioglycollate-elicited peritoneal macrophages” in eLIFE.

8/16/2021: Joseph Lin, MSTP candidate, has received an F30 award for his project “Role of sterol-CoA desaturase 2 in macrophage-mediated antimicrobial immunity”.  

8/5/2021: Dr. Rajendra Apte, MD PhD’s article “Age-Related Macular Degeneration” is now available in the New England Journal of Medicine and his Q&A with National Eye Institute regarding AMD is  available here.

5/19/2021: Congratulations, Dr. Mitsu Yoshida, Washington University School of Medicine graduate!

5/5/2021: Ryo Terao, MD PhD  has been selected as the 2021 International Retinal Research Foundation Alston Callahan, MD Postdoctoral Scholar

Current Projects:

  • Investigating the mechanisms underlying photoreceptor cell death in models of retinal disease
  • Investigating the role of the innate immune system in regulating angiogenesis
  • Analyzing gene expression of the macrophage transcriptome and the effects of aging
  • Examining the mechanisms responsible for changes in macrophage cell metabolism that may contribute to blinding diseases of the eye
  • Using tissue specific deletion of soluble and membrane expressed molecular activators of myeloid cell function in order to define the role of these cells in regulating post-developmental angiogenesis and retinal photoreceptor cell demise
  • Studying the role of senescence and physiologic aging and their contribution to age-associated eye diseases