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Navneet K. Dhillon, Ph.D

Navneet Dhillon portrait
Professor, Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine

Director, Director of Pulmonary Research, Pulmonary

Director, Director of PBF Summer Fellowship Program

Professional Background

Dr. Dhillon received her Ph.D. degree in 2003 from the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research in Chandigarh, India, and then moved to the University of Kansas Medical Center for a postdoctoral fellowship, where she has risen to the rank of tenured Professor of Medicine. She also has a joint appointment in the Department of Cell Biology and Physiology. Dr. Dhillon is an international leader in studying disorders of pulmonary circulation, including the cellular and molecular pathogenesis of pulmonary hypertension in the setting of HIV infection, and illicit drug use. As a Director of Pulmonary Research, she is actively involved in promoting the research careers of junior faculty members and fellows of the division.

Dr. Dhillon is also a Director of the Parker B Francis (PBF) Summer Fellowship Program that provides opportunities to undergraduate students, particularly those from underrepresented minorities in science and medicine for hands-on innovative research experience. Learn more about the PBF fellowship by scrolling up and clicking on fellowships under the “department website” link above.

Education and Training
  • BS, Biochemistry (Honors), Punjab U., Chandigarh
  • MS, Biochemistry ( Honors), Punjab U., Chandigarh
  • PhD, Biochemistry, Punjab U., Chandigarh
  • Post Doctoral Fellowship, HIV-associated end organ diseases, University of Kansas Medical Center
Professional Affiliations
  • Infection and Pulmonary Vascular disease (iPVD), Chair Elect, 2021 - 2022
  • Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute, Schistosomiasis & HIV Task Forces, Co-Chair, 2020 - Present
  • American Thoracic Society , Program committee, ATS Assembly on Pulmonary Circulation, Member, 2018 - Present
  • American Thoracic Society , ATS, Research Advisory Committee, Member, 2018 - Present
  • American Thoracic Society , Program committee, ATS Assembly on Pulmonary Infection and Tuberculosis, Member, 2014 - 2017



Research in Dr. Dhillon laboratory is focused on understanding the pathogenesis of HIV-associated end stage diseases particularly cardio-pulmonary disorders. One of the primary research efforts is aimed at understanding how HIV-1 and drugs of abuse contribute alone and in concert to the vascular dysfunction associated with pulmonary hypertension and other cardiovascular/pulmonary complications. The other main focus of the laboratory is aimed at understanding the interplay of macrophages, T cells, cytokines and chemokines in lung pathology associated with HIV-infection. We demonstrated important role of extracellular vesicles (EVs) mediated cell-cell communication in HIV-related chronic lung diseases. Recently we began to question the relationship of alterations in the circulating EVs with the severity of illness in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2.

Current research is aimed at:
-Elucidating the role of long non-coding RNAs in the regulation of proliferative and anti-proliferative cascades in pulmonary smooth muscle cells.
-Investigating the role of inflammatory cell-derived extracellular vesicles in pulmonary vascular remodeling.
-Defining the mediators and markers of endothelial injury and disease severity in COVID-19 patients and how these changes may persist in individuals with long term complications

Current Research and Grants
  • Drug abuse and HIV-associated pulmonary vascular injury, NHLBI, PI
  • Potential Role of Extracellular Vesicles for the Development of HIV Comorbidities, NHLBI, Co-I
  • Krishnamachary, Balaji, Cook, Christine, Kumar, Ashok, Spikes, Leslie, Chalise, Prabhakar, Dhillon, Navneet., K.. 2021. Extracellular vesicle‐mediated endothelial apoptosis and EV‐associated proteins correlate with COVID‐19 disease severity. Journal of Extracellular Vesicles, 10 (9).
  • Krishnamachary, B, Mahajan, A, Kumar, A, Agarwal, S, Mohan, A, Chen, L, Hsue, P., Y, Chalise, P, Morris, A, Dhillon, N., K. 2021. Extracellular Vesicle TGF-β1 Is Linked to Cardiopulmonary Dysfunction in Human Immunodeficiency Virus.. American journal of respiratory cell and molecular biology, 65 (4), 413-429
  • Chinnappan, M, Mohan, A, Agarwal, S, Dalvi, P, Dhillon, N., K. 2018. Network of MicroRNAs Mediate Translational Repression of Bone Morphogenetic Protein Receptor-2: Involvement in HIV-Associated Pulmonary Vascular Remodeling.. Journal of the American Heart Association, 7 (5)
  • Dalvi, P, Sharma, H, Chinnappan, M, Sanderson, M, Allen, J, Zeng, R, Choi, A, O'Brien-Ladner, A, Dhillon, N., K. 2016. Enhanced autophagy in pulmonary endothelial cells on exposure to HIV-Tat and morphine: Role in HIV-related pulmonary arterial hypertension.. Autophagy, 12 (12), 2420-2438
  • Dalvi, P, O'Brien-Ladner, A, Dhillon, N., K. 2013. Downregulation of bone morphogenetic protein receptor axis during HIV-1 and cocaine-mediated pulmonary smooth muscle hyperplasia: implications for HIV-related pulmonary arterial hypertension.. Arteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology, 33 (11), 2585-95
  • Spikes, L, Dalvi, P, Tawfik, O, Gu, H, Voelkel, N., F, Cheney, P, O'Brien-Ladner, A, Dhillon, N., K. 2012. Enhanced pulmonary arteriopathy in simian immunodeficiency virus-infected macaques exposed to morphine.. American journal of respiratory and critical care medicine, 185 (11), 1235-43