The immune system develops from hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells in the bone marrow, which undergo extensive genetic and epigenetic reprogramming to differentiate into mature immune cells. Understanding the generation and function of mature immune cells throughout life in both normal and disease states may lead to novel therapeutic strategies for immunodeficiency, autoimmune conditions, and infectious diseases.

Faculty and students in our program study all aspects of the development, metabolism, and function of dendritic cells, T, B and NK lymphocytes, and monocytes/macrophages in human samples and in animal models.

This research is supported by state of the art Advanced Technology Cores.

Profiles of Faculty Working on Immune System Development, Metabolism and Function

Christine Beeton, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-5030

Autoimmune diseases (multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis); Identification of therapeutic targets and drug development…

Andre Catic, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor & CPRIT Scholar in Cancer Research

Phone

  • (713) 798-1567

We study protein quality control mechanisms and their involvement in gene regulation, metabolism, and aging.

Min Chen

Associate Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-8507

Autoimmunity and inflammation; Dendritic cells in immune regulation; Cytokine signal transduction

Margaret Ellen Conner, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-3590

Pathogenesis of and immunity to enteric pathogens

Gretchen Diehl, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Impact of the microbiota on intestinal immune responses

Farrah Kheradmand, M.D.

Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-8622

Immune cells and lung disease; Matrix metalloproteinases; Cytokine function

Katherine Yudeh King, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Role of interferon-gamma in hematopoietic stem cell regulation

Jonathan Michael Levitt, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-8820

Immunotherapies, dendritic cell vaccines, and biomarkers for BPH and prostate cancer

Paul Dalling Ling, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-8474

Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus (EEHV); Gammaherpesvirus pathogenesis

Anthony Maresso, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-7369

Pathogenesis of bacterial infections

Robin Parihar, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Pediatric solid tumors; Solid tumor microenvironment; Natural Killer (NK) cell biology; Cellular therapies for solid tumors

Buck Samuel, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-9110

Microbiome programming of host physiology and development; Genetics and genomics of host-microbe interactions…

Gad Shaulsky, Ph.D.

Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-8082

Functional Genomics and Transcriptome analysis; The evolution of social behavior in Dictyostelium; Allorecognition in Dictyostelium…

Huaizhu Wu, M.D.

Associate Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-4141

Obesity, inflammation and insulin resistance; Lipids, monocytes/macrophages and atherosclerosis; Basic and translational research

Li-Yuan Yu-Lee, Ph.D.

Professor

Phone

  • (713) 798-4770

Immune and inflammatory responses and regulation; Mitotic kinases in cell cycle regulation; Cytokinesis and aneuploidy; Cell migration and metastasis