Section of Renal and Vascular Inflammation

The Section of Renal and Vascular Inflammation comprises a diverse group of scientists and clinician-scientists with wide-ranging interests, all converging on understanding the pathogenic mechanisms of kidney injury and repair.

Research interests include the renal disorders glomerulonephritis and diabetic nephropathy, as well as chronic kidney and vascular disease. The studies utilise a variety of methods, including cell cultures and animal models, before considering clinical trials.

In glomerulonephritis, work in the Section is directed at understanding the underlying autoimmune response and the mechanisms of tissue inflammation, with a view to identifying new therapeutic targets.  In diabetic nephropathy, we aim to investigate the key role played by chemokines and the growth factors in kidney damage, and to develop biomarkers and new approaches to treatment.  In chronic kidney disease, we are studying mechanisms underlying the greatly increased incidence of atherosclerosis and chronic cardiovascular disease.  In kidney transplantation, we are studying mechanisms of antibody mediated transplant rejection in order to develop effective treatment.

In addition to these main interests, the Section has a number of translational projects, including the genetics of various types of glomerulonephritis, the role of ethnicity in the predisposition to renal disease, and the development of novel biomarkers in various kidney diseases. The Section contributes to several national and international clinical trials of glomerulonephritis and vasculitis.

The Section receives funding from organisations including the Medical Research Council, Wellcome Trust, Arthritis Research UK, British Heart Foundation, Kidney Research UK and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

Research interests and centre leadership

Research interests and areas

  • Pathogenesis and treatment of glomerulonephritis, specifically anti-GBM disease, systemic vasculitis, SLE and IgA nephropathy
  • Characterising vascular inflammation in chronic kidney disease
  • Development of diabetic nephropathy and the key role played by CTGF in this process, as well as in other fibrosing renal states



Section leadership

Head of Renal and Vascular Inflammation

Professor Charles Pusey is Professor of Medicine, and Consultant Physician and Lead Clinician in the Renal Directorate at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. He is a clinician-scientist with a particular interest in autoimmune renal disease, including primary systemic vasculitis. He runs a large multidisciplinary vasculitis clinic and has made a major contribution to clinical trials in this area. He directs an internationally competitive laboratory research programme studying mechanisms of autoimmunity, inflammation, and scarring in glomerulonephritis.

Further information on Professor Pusey

Research group leads