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Rao Laboratory | Overview

Core Activities:  The gastrointestinal (GI) tract is unique among other organs because it has its own intrinsic nervous system that can function largely independently to regulate a variety of digestive and metabolic functions. Our lab uses mouse genetic models, in vivo and in vitro assays to investigate how information about nutrients, microbes, and mechanical stimuli is detected and used by this enteric nervous system (ENS) to regulate GI motility, appetite, epithelial repair and immune responses. Our work is directly relevant to digestive disorders and obesity.