Simon Hirota

Associate Professor

Physiology and Pharmacology

Full Member

Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseases



Contact information


Office: 403.210.7888

Web presence



Office : HSC1845

Preferred method of communication

Administrative Assistant
Barbara Chyz
Phone: 403.220.4555

Research and teaching

Research areas

  • Inflammasome
  • Innate immunity
  • Necrotizing enterocolitis
  • Inflammatory bowel diseases
  • Crohn's disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Microbiota
  • Macrophage
  • Dendritic cell
  • Epithelium

Research Activities

My laboratory is focused on the role that nuclear receptors play in host-microbe/host-pathogen/host-environment interactions in the gastrointestinal tract.  I believe that nuclear receptors act as xenobiotic sensors and respond to environmental contaminants, microbial metabolites and other small molecules, and regulate cellular processes in intestinal epithelial cells and mucosal immune cells.  In other studies, my laboratory is examining the role that NR4A1(an orphan nuclear receptor also known as NUR77, TR3, NGFI-B, or NAK-1) play in regulating intestinal epithelial barrier function, mucosal repair responses and intestinal fibrosis, to determine whether it could be an attractive therapeutic target for treating gastrointestinal diseases associated with mucosal damage, increased permeability and aberrant tissue remodeling.