Current Members

Raised in an Air Force family, I grew up in Alaska, the upper peninsula of Michigan, and eventually settled with my family in the South. After obtaining my MD and PhD degrees at Louisiana State University, I pursued my pediatric training at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, Arkansas. I followed this with a fellowship in Pediatric Infectious Diseases at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas and post-doctoral research training at Baylor Immunology Institute under the direction of Dr. Jacques Banchereau.  In 2003, I joined the faculty in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at UT Southwestern.  My research focuses on the role of dendritic cells in two of the most common etiologies of respiratory disease in children: allergic asthma and respiratory viral infections including RSV bronchiolitis and influenza.


I was born and brought up in India and came to United States in 2000 to pursue my Graduate studies.  I earned my Masters degree in Molecular Biology from Texas Woman’s University in 2003 and joined the laboratory of Dr. Gill in December of 2005. I had been working on various projects related to the dendritic cell studies and currently I am a doctoral candidate in Dr. Gill’s lab. I will be dissecting the molecular mechanisms involved in allergic stimulation-mediated interference in DC antiviral responses. When I get some spare time, I do experimental cooking. We are a very cool team!


I grew up in Xi’an, one of the oldest cities in China and received my Master degree in Physiology at East China Normal University in Shanghai in 2006. I joined the Internal Medicine department at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas in May of 2007. As a research associate, I work on projects associated with the Inner City Asthma Consortium studies. My hobby is making cakes and eating cakes.  


I grew up in Arlington, TX with one brother and one sister.  I did my undergraduate work at Texas A&M University where I earned Bachelors degrees in Chemistry and Psychology.  I am currently in the MSTP program at UT Southwestern and joined the lab in 2009.  My project focuses on the role of the high affinity IgE receptor on human monocytes and how it affects innate immune responses.  My wife, Alaina, and I are expecting our first son in December 2010. 


I came to Texas three years ago to join UT Southwestern's pediatric residency program at Children's Medical Center.  Prior to that I attended the Medical College of Wisconsin in that frigid wasteland known as Milwaukee. Even earlier than that I dodged raindrops in Seattle at the University of Washington (go Huskies!).  Finding Texas heat, sun, plentiful burritos, and margaritas to my liking, I decided to stay on at UT Southwestern for a fellowship in Infectious Disease.  My current work in the Gill lab focuses on the response of human immune cells (specifically myeloid dendritic cells) to rhinovirus infection.  I am interested in the interplay between respiratory viruses and childhood asthma exacerbations.  In my spare time I love to travel, cook, and watch horror movies.

Collaborators - Clinical Projects  


Dr. Gruchalla received her PhD and medical degrees from UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.  After completing internal medicine training at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and allergy and immunology training at UT Southwestern, she joined the UT Southwestern faculty. Dr. Gruchalla directs the allergy and immunology division in both the departments of medicine and pediatrics.  Her research efforts are focused on pediatric asthma.  For many years, she has been participating in NIH-funded pediatric inner city asthma studies as a part of the Inner City Asthma Consortium (ICAC).  As a part of this Consortium, Dr. Gruchalla and her colleagues continue to evaluate the immunologic mechanisms that are responsible for asthma severity in inner city populations.   



Pictured left to right:

Dolores Santoyo – MSW-Research Assistant
Becky Schutz – Coordinator and Study Nurse
Brenda Lewis – Recruiter, Research Assistant
Debi Jimenez – Research Assistant


Drew Bird, MD - After finishing Allergy and Immunology fellowship training at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and additional Food Allergy Research training at Duke University under the mentorship of Dr. Wesley Burks, I accepted a position at UT Southwestern in the Division of Allergy and Immunology.  Our Food Allergy Center is a state-of-the-art facility in the Pavilion at Children's Medical Center.  We treat children with various food-induced allergic diseases.  My research interests focus on IgE-mediated food allergies and understanding the immunologic responses involved in the development of oral tolerance.

Irene Dougherty – I was born and raised in San Jose, California and received a BS in microbiology and a minor in biochemistry from San Jose State University. I have worked at UT Southwestern for over 25 years and I am currently a research associate in both the Dermatology department and the Division of Allergy & Immunology.  I have participated in melanoma research and also in the Inner City Asthma Consortium mechanistic studies. I am currently working on peanut allergy studies with Drew Bird. I’ve been married to my husband Joel for over 30 years and have two beautiful daughters, Emiko and Mariko.


Past Lab Members  

Carolyn C. Dong
(214) 645-6287