I primarily work in two areas of basic and translational research: 1) the role of inflammation in the genesis of vascular disease in sickle cell disease; 2) the detection and management of transfusion related iron overload. Our research employs various engineering-intensive methodologies (MRI, laser Doppler flow, digital image analysis, signal processing) to explore the basic mechanisms of sickle cell disease and to measure the effect of various treatment modalities. We use direct measures of microvascular blood flow to monitor the process of vasoocclusion and relate it to simultaneous measures of autonomic nervous system function. These methodologies translate in measurements that can be used to follow patients clinically. In collaboration with members of the Cardiology, Pulmonology, and Radiology Departments at Childrenâ€™s Hospital Los Angeles, the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Physiology/Biophysics at the Keck School of Medicine, we devised methods to measure the sickling process in human sickle cell subjects and relate these measurements to clinical factors that modulate disease severity.