Dr. Shruti Naik is a postdoctoral scientist in Immunology and Stem Cell Biology at The Rockefeller University. Her research is focused on understanding the role that adult stem cells play in inflammation and how they can be implemented to treat inflammatory disorders. In her present work, she is especially focused on how inflammatory stress affects epidermal stem cells’ long-term fitness.
In Dr. Naik’s experiments with mice, she has proven that wounds closed more than twice as fast in skin that had already experienced inflammation than in skin that had never been damaged—even if that initial inflammatory experience had occurred as long as six months earlier (6 months in mice is the equivalent of 15 years for humans). Her team found that healing sped up because the inflammation-experienced stem cells were better at moving into the wound to repair the breach.
Dr. Shruti received her B.S in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Maryland College Park and her PhD in Immunology from the University of Pennsylvania. She is also a 2016 L’Oréal USA For Women in Science Fellow. She started studying the complex world of the skin microbiome at a time when most work in the microbiota field focused on the gut; her notable research of the skin microbiome significantly contributed to the introduction of a US government ban on commercial soaps containing any of 19 different antibacterial chemicals. In her words, “we were able to show that the skin has these bacteria, that they are important and that we shouldn’t shower ourselves with these products that contribute to antibiotic overuse.”
Naik S, Larsen S B, Gomez N C, Alaverdyan K, Sendoel A, Yuan S, Polak L, Kulukian A, Chai S, Fuchs E. “Inflammatory memory sensitizes skin epithelial stem cells to tissue damage.” Nature. 550(7677):475-480, 2017 Oct 26. Web 2017 Oct 18. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29045388. DOI: 10.1038/nature24271
Sendoel A, Dunn J G, Rodriguez E H, Naik S, Gomez N C, Hurwitz B, Levorse J, Dill B D, Schramek D, Molina H, Weissman J S, Fuchs E. “Translation from unconventional 5′ start sites drives tumour initiation.” Nature, 541(7638):494-499, 2017 Jan 26. Web 2017 Jan 11. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28077873. DOI: 10.1038/nature21036
Keyes B E, Liu S, Asare A, Naik S, Levorse J, Polak L, Lu C P, Nikolova M, Pasolli H A, Fuchs E. “Impaired epidermal to dendritic T cell signaling slows wound repair in aged skin.” Cell, 167(5):1323-1338.e14, 2016 Nov 17. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27863246. DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2016.10.052
Kulukian A, Holland A J, Vitre B, Naik S, Cleveland D W, Fuchs E. “Epidermal development, growth control, and homeostasis in the face of centrosome amplification.” Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 112(46):E6311-20, 2015 Nov 17. Web 2015 Nov 2. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26578791. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1518376112
Scholz F, Naik S, Sutterwala F S, Kaplan D H. “Langerhans cells suppress CD49a+ NK cell-mediated skin inflammation.”J Immunol. 195(5):2335-42, 2015 Sep 1. Web 2015 Jul 24. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26209621. DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.1500935
Naik S, Bouladoux N, Linehan J L, Han S J, Harrison O J, Wilhelm C, Conlan S, Himmelfarb S, Byrd A L, Deming C, Quinones M, Brenchley J M, Kong H H, Tussiwand R, Murphy K M, Merad M, Segre J A, Belkaid Y. “Commensal-dendritic-cell interaction specifies a unique protective skin immune signature.” Nature. 520(7545):104-8, 2015 Apr 2. Web 2015 Jan 5. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25539086. DOI: 10.1038/nature14052.
Iida N, Dzutsev A, Stewart C A, Smith L, Bouladoux N, Weingarten R A, Molina D A, Salcedo R, Back T, Cramer S, Dai R M, Kiu H, Cardone M, Naik S, Patri A K, Wang E, Marincola F M, Frank K M, Belkaid Y, Trinchieri G, Goldszmid R S. “Commensal bacteria control cancer response to therapy by modulating the tumor microenvironment.” Science.342(6161):967-70, 2013 Nov 22. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24264989. DOI: 10.1126/science.1240527
Molloy M J, Grainger J R, Bouladoux N, Hand T W, Koo L Y, Naik S, Quinones M, Dzutsev A K, Gao J L, Trinchieri G, Murphy P M, Belkaid Y. “Intraluminal containment of commensal outgrowth in the gut during infection-induced dysbiosis.” Cell Host Microbe. 14(3):318-28, 2013 Sep 11..Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24034617. DOI: 10.1016/j.chom.2013.08.003.
Chappert P, Bouladoux N, Naik S, Schwartz R H. “Specific gut commensal flora locally alters T cell tuning to endogenous ligands.” Immunity. 38(6):1198-210, 2013 Jun 27. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23809163. DOI: 10.1016/j.immuni.2013.06.005
Belkaid Y, Naik S. “Compartmentalized and systemic control of tissue immunity by commensals.” Nat Immunol. 14(7):646-53, 2013 Jul. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23778791. DOI: 10.1038/ni.2604.
Carpenter A C, Grainger J R, Xiong Y, Kanno Y, Chu H H, Wang L, Naik S, dos Santos L, Wei L, Jenkins M K, O’Shea J J, Belkaid Y, Bosselut R. “The transcription factors Thpok and LRF are necessary and partly redundant for T helper cell differentiation.” Immunity, 37(4):622-33, 2012 Oct 19. Web 2012 Oct 4. Accessed 2018 June 4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23041065 DOI: 10.1016/j.immuni.2012.06.019