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    Joel Ernest Schechter, PhD

    TitleProfessor of Cell & Neurobiology
    SchoolKeck School of Medicine of USC
    DepartmentIntegrative Anatomical Sciences
    AddressBMT 11-H 1333 San Pablo Street
    Health Sciences Campus
    Los Angeles California 90089
    Phone+1 323 442 1862
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      Collapse Overview 
      Collapse Overview
      Research in Dr. Schechter's laboratory emphasizes the functional roles of Prolactin as an immunomodulator, and its interactions with various growth factors, in the lacrimal gland. There is a very high incidence of dry eye conditions which affect women, and these conditions are the leading cause that brings women to see ophthalmologists. The highest incidence is associated with menopause, i.e., it is related to an altered hormonal state. Evidence from studies by the USC Lacrimal Research Group indicates that androgens are a critical factor in the development of menopausal-related dry

      eye disease. Dry eye syndromes can furthermore develop into an autoimmune disease called Sj?gren's Syndrome. These dry eye conditions appear to result from the changing hormonal milieu in aging and postmenopausal females (decreased androgens below a minimal critical level). Studies in Dr.Schechter?s laboratory are defining specific pathways and mechanisms by which growth factors, various cytokines, and Prolactin, participate in the etiology of these conditions, as well as in the secretory and immune functions of the normal lacrimal gland. We have recently completed studies

      that establish that pregnancy and lactation are additional physiological states in which the lacrimal gland becomes more vulnerable to disturbances of the ocular surface. This research has the potential for direct applicability to treatment methods for dry eye conditions.


      Collapse Bibliographic 
      Collapse Publications
      Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help.
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      1. Chen CL, Huang JY, Wang CH, Tahara SM, Zhou L, Kondo Y, Schechter J, Su L, Lai MM, Wakita T, Cosset FL, Jung JU, Machida K. Hepatitis C virus has a genetically determined lymphotropism through co-receptor B7.2. Nat Commun. 2017 Jan 09; 8:13882. PMID: 28067225.
        View in: PubMed
      2. Mircheff AK, Wang Y, Schechter J, Li M, Tong W, Attar M, Chengalvala M, Harmuth J, Prusakiewicz JJ. Multiple Natural and Experimental Inflammatory Rabbit Lacrimal Gland Phenotypes. Ocul Surf. 2016 Oct; 14(4):460-483.e3. PMID: 27423911.
        View in: PubMed
      3. Mircheff AK, Wang Y, Ding C, Warren DW, Schechter J. Potentially pathogenic immune cells and networks in apparently healthy lacrimal glands. Ocul Surf. 2015 Jan; 13(1):47-81. PMID: 25557346; PMCID: PMC4284438.
      4. Wei RH, Thomas PB, Samant DM, Schechter J, Mircheff AK, Trousdale MD. Autoimmune dacryoadenitis and sialadenitis induced in rabbits by intravenous injection of autologous lymphocytes activated ex vivo against lacrimal antigens. Cornea. 2012 Jun; 31(6):693-701. PMID: 22333667.
        View in: PubMed
      5. Chiang L, Ngo J, Schechter J, Karvar S, Tolmachova T, Seabra MC, Hume AN, Hamm-Alvarez SF. Rab27b regulates exocytosis of secretory vesicles in acinar epithelial cells from the lacrimal gland. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2011 Aug; 301(2):C507-21. PMID: 21525430; PMCID: PMC3154548.
      6. Thomas PB, Samant DM, Wang Y, Selvam S, Stevenson D, Gray JD, Schechter J, Mircheff AK, Trousdale MD. Distinct dacryoadenitides autoadoptively transferred to rabbits by different subpopulations of lymphocytes activated ex vivo. Cornea. 2010 Oct; 29(10):1153-62. PMID: 20577087; PMCID: PMC2945426.
      7. Schechter J, Warren DW, Mircheff AK. A lacrimal gland is a lacrimal gland, but rodent's and rabbit's are not human. Ocul Surf. 2010 Jul; 8(3):111-34. PMID: 20712969.
        View in: PubMed
      8. Thomas PB, Samant DM, Selvam S, Wei RH, Wang Y, Stevenson D, Schechter J, Apparailly F, Mircheff AK, Trousdale MD. Adeno-associated virus-mediated IL-10 gene transfer suppresses lacrimal gland immunopathology in a rabbit model of autoimmune dacryoadenitis. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2010 Oct; 51(10):5137-44. PMID: 20505195; PMCID: PMC3066626.
      9. Selvam S, Chang WV, Nakamura T, Samant DM, Thomas PB, Trousdale MD, Mircheff AK, Schechter J, Yiu SC. Microporous poly(L-lactic acid) membranes fabricated by polyethylene glycol solvent-cast/particulate leaching technique. Tissue Eng Part C Methods. 2009 Sep; 15(3):463-74. PMID: 19260769; PMCID: PMC2821069.
      10. Thomas PB, Samant DM, Zhu Z, Selvam S, Stevenson D, Wang Y, Song SW, Mircheff AK, Schechter J, Yiu SC, Trousdale MD. Long-term topical cyclosporine treatment improves tear production and reduces keratoconjunctivitis in rabbits with induced autoimmune dacryoadenitis. J Ocul Pharmacol Ther. 2009 Jun; 25(3):285-92. PMID: 19456259; PMCID: PMC2838611.
      11. McDonald ML, Wang Y, Selvam S, Nakamura T, Chow RH, Schechter J, Yiu SC, Mircheff AK. Cytopathology and exocrine dysfunction induced in ex vivo rabbit lacrimal gland acinar cell models by chronic exposure to histamine or serotonin. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2009 Jul; 50(7):3164-75. PMID: 19324838.
        View in: PubMed
      12. Marchelletta RR, Jacobs DT, Schechter J, Cheney RE, Hamm-Alvarez SF. The class V myosin motor, myosin 5c, localizes to mature secretory vesicles and facilitates exocytosis in lacrimal acini. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2008 Jul; 295(1):C13-28. PMID: 18434623; PMCID: PMC2493552.
      13. Ding C, Rife L, Nakamura T, Wang YW, Kopp K, Schechter J. A novel, local technique for studying rabbit lacrimal gland secretion in situ. Ophthalmic Res. 2008; 40(1):49-52. PMID: 18025840.
        View in: PubMed
      14. Wang Y, Chiu CT, Nakamura T, Walker AM, Petridou B, Trousdale MD, Hamm-Alvarez SF, Mircheff AK, Schechter J. Traffic of endogenous, transduced, and endocytosed prolactin in rabbit lacrimal acinar cells. Exp Eye Res. 2007 Dec; 85(6):749-61. PMID: 17904551; PMCID: PMC2190296.
      15. Selvam S, Thomas PB, Gukasyan HJ, Yu AS, Stevenson D, Trousdale MD, Mircheff AK, Schechter J, Smith RE, Yiu SC. Transepithelial bioelectrical properties of rabbit acinar cell monolayers on polyester membrane scaffolds. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2007 Oct; 293(4):C1412-9. PMID: 17699637.
        View in: PubMed
      16. Selvam S, Thomas PB, Trousdale MD, Stevenson D, Schechter J, Mircheff AK, Jacob JT, Smith RE, Yiu SC. Tissue-engineered tear secretory system: functional lacrimal gland acinar cells cultured on matrix protein-coated substrata. J Biomed Mater Res B Appl Biomater. 2007 Jan; 80(1):192-200. PMID: 16850479.
        View in: PubMed
      17. Wang Y, Chiu CT, Nakamura T, Walker AM, Petridou B, Trousdale MD, Hamm-Alvarez SF, Schechter J, Mircheff AK. Elevated prolactin redirects secretory vesicle traffic in rabbit lacrimal acinar cells. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2007 Apr; 292(4):E1122-34. PMID: 17164431.
        View in: PubMed
      18. Selvam S, Thomas PB, Hamm-Alvarez SF, Schechter J, Stevenson D, Mircheff AK, Trousdale MD. Current status of gene delivery and gene therapy in lacrimal gland using viral vectors. Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2006 Nov 15; 58(11):1243-57. PMID: 17056149; PMCID: PMC1773022.
      19. Ding C, Chang N, Fong YC, Wang Y, Trousdale MD, Mircheff AK, Schechter J. Interacting influences of pregnancy and corneal injury on rabbit lacrimal gland immunoarchitecture and function. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2006 Apr; 47(4):1368-75. PMID: 16565370.
        View in: PubMed
      20. Wu K, Jerdeva GV, da Costa SR, Sou E, Schechter J, Hamm-Alvarez SF. Molecular mechanisms of lacrimal acinar secretory vesicle exocytosis. Exp Eye Res. 2006 Jul; 83(1):84-96. PMID: 16530759.
        View in: PubMed
      21. Ding C, MacVeigh M, Pidgeon M, da Costa SR, Wu K, Hamm-Alvarez SF, Schechter J. Unique ultrastructure of exorbital lacrimal glands in male NOD and BALB/c mice. Curr Eye Res. 2006 Jan; 31(1):13-22. PMID: 16421015.
        View in: PubMed
      22. Jerdeva GV, Wu K, Yarber FA, Rhodes CJ, Kalman D, Schechter J, Hamm-Alvarez SF. Actin and non-muscle myosin II facilitate apical exocytosis of tear proteins in rabbit lacrimal acinar epithelial cells. J Cell Sci. 2005 Oct 15; 118(Pt 20):4797-812. PMID: 16219687; PMCID: PMC1482462.
      23. Mircheff AK, Wang Y, Jean Mde S, Ding C, Trousdale MD, Hamm-Alvarez SF, Schechter J. Mucosal immunity and self-tolerance in the ocular surface system. Ocul Surf. 2005 Oct; 3(4):182-92. PMID: 17131026.
        View in: PubMed
      24. da Costa SR, Wu K, Veigh MM, Pidgeon M, Ding C, Schechter J, Hamm-Alvarez SF. Male NOD mouse external lacrimal glands exhibit profound changes in the exocytotic pathway early in postnatal development. Exp Eye Res. 2006 Jan; 82(1):33-45. PMID: 16005870; PMCID: PMC1351294.
      25. Trousdale MD, Zhu Z, Stevenson D, Schechter J, Ritter T, Mircheff AK. Expression of TNF inhibitor gene in the lacrimal gland promotes recovery of tear production and tear stability and reduced immunopathology in rabbits with induced autoimmune dacryoadenitis. J Autoimmune Dis. 2005 Jun 28; 2:6. PMID: 15985164; PMCID: PMC1187915.
      26. Zhu Z, Stevenson D, Schechter J, Mircheff AK, Ritter T, Labree L, Trousdale MD. Prophylactic effect of IL-10 gene transfer on induced autoimmune dacryoadenitis. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2004 May; 45(5):1375-81. PMID: 15111591.
        View in: PubMed
      27. Azzarolo AM, Eihausen H, Schechter J. Estrogen prevention of lacrimal gland cell death and lymphocytic infiltration. Exp Eye Res. 2003 Sep; 77(3):347-54. PMID: 12907167.
        View in: PubMed
      28. Da Costa SR, Sou E, Xie J, Yarber FA, Okamoto CT, Pidgeon M, Kessels MM, Mircheff AK, Schechter J, Qualmann B, Hamm-Alvarez SF. Impairing actin filament or syndapin functions promotes accumulation of clathrin-coated vesicles at the apical plasma membrane of acinar epithelial cells. Mol Biol Cell. 2003 Nov; 14(11):4397-413. PMID: 12937279; PMCID: PMC266760.
      29. Zhu Z, Stevenson D, Schechter J, Mircheff AK, Crow RW, Atkinson R, Ritter T, Bose S, Trousdale MD. Tumor necrosis factor inhibitor gene expression suppresses lacrimal gland immunopathology in a rabbit model of autoimmune dacryoadenitis. Cornea. 2003 May; 22(4):343-51. PMID: 12792478.
        View in: PubMed
      30. Zhu Z, Stevenson D, Schechter J, Mircheff AK, Atkinson R, Trousdale MD. Lacrimal histopathology and ocular surface disease in a rabbit model of autoimmune dacryoadenitis. Cornea. 2003 Jan; 22(1):25-32. PMID: 12502944.
        View in: PubMed
      31. Schechter J, Stevenson D, Chang D, Chang N, Pidgeon M, Nakamura T, Okamoto CT, Trousdale MD, Mircheff AK. Growth of purified lacrimal acinar cells in Matrigel raft cultures. Exp Eye Res. 2002 Mar; 74(3):349-60. PMID: 12014916.
        View in: PubMed
      32. Zhu Z, Stevenson D, Ritter T, Schechter J, Mircheff AK, Kaslow HR, Trousdale MD. Expression of IL-10 and TNF-inhibitor genes in lacrimal gland epithelial cells suppresses their ability to activate lymphocytes. Cornea. 2002 Mar; 21(2):210-4. PMID: 11862098.
        View in: PubMed
      33. Trousdale MD, Stevenson D, Zhu Z, Kaslow HR, Schechter J, Warren DW, Azzarolo AM, Ritter T, Mircheff AK. Effect of anti-inflammatory cytokines on the activation of lymphocytes by lacrimal gland acinar cells in an autologous mixed cell reaction. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2002; 506(Pt B):789-94. PMID: 12613993.
        View in: PubMed
      34. Zhang Y, Xie J, Qian L, Schechter J, Mircheff AK. IL-2 immunoreactive proteins in lacrimal acinar cells. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2002; 506(Pt B):795-9. PMID: 12613994.
        View in: PubMed
      35. Schechter J, Pidgeon M, Chang D, Fong YC, Trousdale MD, Chang N. Potential role of disrupted lacrimal acinar cells in dry eye during pregnancy. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2002; 506(Pt A):153-7. PMID: 12613902.
        View in: PubMed
      36. Stevenson D, Schechter J, Nakamuro T, Chang D, Chang NY, Pidgeon M, Zeng H, Mircheff AK, Trousdale MD. A new model system for studying lacrimal physiology using cultured lacrimal gland acinar cells on Matrigel rafts. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2002; 506(Pt A):159-63. PMID: 12613903.
        View in: PubMed