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Niki Moutsopoulos, D.D.S., Ph.D.

Niki Moutsopoulos, D.D.S., Ph.D.Tenure Track Clinical Investigator
Oral Immunity and Infection Unit

BETHESDA MD 20892-4320

Phone: (301) 435-7182

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Moutsopoulos received a DDS degree from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece and a certificate in Periodontics from the University of Maryland, School of Dentistry. Following her clinical training she obtained a PhD in Oral and Experimental Pathology with a focus in Immunology from the University of Maryland in collaboration with the NIDCR. After the completion of her doctorate degree, she continued at the NIH in the laboratory Sharon Wahl as a post-doctoral fellow focusing on macrophage biology. Since 2010, Dr Moutsopoulos has been an Assistant Clinical Investigator at NIDCR working closely with the Laboratory of Clinical Infectious Diseases (NIAID) developing a clinical/translational research program focused on human oral mucosal immunity. Her ongoing studies interrogate basic mechanisms of oral immunity and inflammation through the study of patients with single gene disruptions. A central aim of her laboratory is the understanding of how the local microbiome helps shape oral mucosal immunity in health and in the setting of the common oral inflammatory disease, periodontitis.

Research Interests/Scientific Focus

Our program is committed to understanding human oral mucosal immunity in health and in the common inflammatory disease, periodontitis. Periodontitis is considered a microbial-stimulated inflammatory disease in which exacerbated inflammatory responses lead to destruction of tooth supporting structures (connective tissue and bone). How microbial dysbiosis, along with specific host factors, predisposes to disease susceptibility is not clearly understood.  Our studies are focused on host/microbe interactions preserving health and mediating inflammatory disease in the oral cavity.  Ultimately, we aim to define key pathways involved in susceptibility and progression of aggressive forms of periodontitis with the goal of identifying therapeutic targets.

A.    To understand how immune homeostasis is regulated in the oral cavity
B.    To dissect mechanisms underlying immune deregulation leading to periodontitis
C.    To  target key inflammatory pathways for the treatment of periodontitis

Selected Publications

  1. Moutsopoulos NM, Chalmers NI,  Barb J., Abusleme L, Greenwell-Wild T, Dutzan N, Paster BJ , Munson PJ, Fine DH, Uzel G, Holland SM.: 2015. Subgingival Microbial Communities in Leukocyte Adhesion Deficiency and their Relationship with Local Immunopathology. PLoS Pathog. 5;11(3):e1004698
  2. Moutsopoulos NM, Konkel J, Sarmadi M, Eskan MA, Wild T, Dutzan N, Abusleme L, Zenobia C, Hosur KB, Abe T, Uzel G, Chen W, Chavakis T, Holland SM, Hajishengallis G.: 2014. Defective neutrophil recruitment in leukocyte adhesion deficiency type I disease causes local IL-17–driven inflammatory bone loss. Sci. Transl. Med. 6, 229ra40.
  3. Betts K, Abusleme L, Freeman AF, Sarmadi M, Fahle G, Pittaluga S, Cuellar-Rodriguez J, Hickstein D, Holland SM, Su H, Moutsopoulos NM.: 2015. A 17-year old patient with DOCK8 deficiency, severe oral HSV-1 and aggressive periodontitis - A case of virally induced periodontitis? J Clin Virol. 63: 46-50
  4. Moutsopoulos NM, Kling HM, Angelov N, Jin W, Palmer RJ, Nares S, Osorio M, Wahl SM. 2012 . Porphyromonasgingivalis promotes Th17 inducing pathways in chronic periodontitis. J Autoimmun. 2012 May 3. [Epub ahead of print] 
  5. Nares, S., Moutsopoulos, N.M., Angelov, N., Rangel, Z., Munson, P.J., Sinha, N., Wahl, S.M.: 2009. Rapid Myeloid Cell Transcriptional and Proteomic Responses to Periodontopathogenic Porphyromonas gingivalis. American Journal of Pathology 174:1400-1414. 
  6. Katsifis, G., Rekka, S., Moutsopoulos, N.M., Pillemer, S., Wahl, S.M.: 2009. Systemic and local IL-17 and linked cytokines associated with Sjogren’s Syndrome immunopathogenesis. American Journal of Pathology 175:1167-1177. 
  7. Greenwell-Wild1, T., Moutsopoulos1, N.M., Gliozzi, M., Kapsogeorgou, E., Rangel, Z., Munson, P., Moutsopoulos, H.M. and Wahl, S.M. 2011. Chitinases in salivary glands and circulation in Sjögren’s Syndrome ­– macrophage harbingers of disease severity. Arth. Rheum. 63(10):3103-15. 1Equally contributed. 
  8. Moutsopoulos, N.M. and Madianos, P.N.: 2006. Low Grade Inflammation in Chronic Infectious Diseases: The Paradigm of Periodontal Infections. Annals NYAS 1088:251-264. 
  9. Moutsopoulos, N.M., Katsifis, G.E., Angelov, N., Leakan, R.A., Sankar, V., Pillemer, S., Wahl, S.M..: 2008. Lack of Efficacy in Sjögren’s Syndrome correlates with failed suppression of TNF-α and systemic immune activation. Ann Rheum Dis 67: 1437-1443.

Clinical Studies

Oral Microbial and Immunological Characterization of Patients With Immune Dysfunction (NCT01568697)

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This page last updated: May 18, 2015