In This Section

Research Programs

Molecular, cellular and genetic techniques are being utilized to advance our understanding of microbiology and immunology. The research programs of the department are funded by peer-reviewed grants, including 20 grants from the National Institutes of Health and several grants from industry or foundations. We also collaborate with faculty in other departments in the School of Medicine and the University and colleagues at other national and international institutions. The interdepartmental collaborations and multi-disciplinary programs have increased the breadth of the potential research projects available to graduate students. The graduate faculty maintains close ties with clinical departments and sections, including the Departments of Medicine, Surgery and Gynecology and Sections of Cardiology and Infectious Diseases.

Current active research areas include the following:

Molecular and Cellular Immunology

  • Molecular and cellular immunology of T and B lymphocytes
  • Molecular aspects of macrophage physiology
  • Signal transduction in epithelial and immune cells
  • Immune response to neoplasia
  • Dendritic cell biology
  • Effects of opioids and cannabionoids on immune function
  • Microbial immunity
  • Immune functions of epithelial cells
  • T cell apoptosis and immune deviation
  • Pathogenesis of skin diseases
  • Induction and resolution of inflammation
  • Pathogenesis of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
  • Translational studies in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Researchers include:

  • Roberto Caricchio
  • Marion Chan
  • Toby Eisenstein
  • Stefania Gallucci
  • Liselotte Jensen
  • Marc Monestier
  • Tomasz Skorski
  • Vincent Tam
  • Alexander Tsygankov
  • Çagla Tükel
  • Hong Wang
  • Yi Zhang

Molecular and Biochemical Microbiology

  • Virulence factors and microbial pathogenesis
  • Host-pathogen interactions
  • Molecular biology of DNA and RNA viruses, including Epstein-Barr Virus and Influenza virus
  • Bacterial plasmids
  • Bacterial and viral immune evasion mechanisms
  • Architecture and physiology of bacterial biofilms

Researchers include:

  • Bettina Buttaro
  • Marion Chan
  • Toby Eisenstein
  • Liselotte Jensen
  • Vincent Tam
  • Italo Tempera
  • Alexander Tsygankov
  • Çagla Tükel

Eukaryotic and Prokaryotic Molecular Genetics and Physiology

  • Cellular and viral oncogenes and their role in cell growth and transformation
  • Viral vectors for human gene therapy
  • Molecular modeling and protein structure/function relationships
  • Molecular genetics of the immune response
  • Unconventional protein secretion pathways
  • Infected and diabetic wound healing

Researchers include:

  • Liselotte Jensen
  • Marc Monestier
  • Tomasz Skorski
  • Alexander Tsygankov
  • Weidong Xiao