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Immunology

City of Hope’s Department of Immunology was established in 1972 by Charles Todd. At that time, immune-based therapies were used on a very limited basis in cancer treatment, reserved for conditions such as malignant melanoma and bladder cancer. Most immunotherapy treatments consisted of agents such as BCG and interferon.

The field of cancer immunology has grown by leaps and bounds, and a wide range of neoplastic diseases, including both hematologic malignancies and solid tumors,are routinely being treated with a well-stocked armamentarium of monoclonal antibodies and other immunotherapy methods.

The Department of Immunology continues its original vision, with a dual focus on both immunology and structural biology. It has seven principal investigators with research interests in cell and tumor immunology and structure analysis, who are aided by state-of-the-art facilities in mass spectrometry and NMR, as well as a computer cluster for computational chemistry.

The unique combination of biological and structural studies and the intensive exploration of structure-function relationships have created a thriving, productive environment that has encouraged fruitful collaboration among investigators at City of Hope and at other institutions.
 
Laboratory Research

John Shively, Ph.D. -  CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen) gene family
Dr. Shively's lab specializes in the CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen) gene family. In particular, he is researching the use of anti-CEA antibodies for tumor imaging and therapy and the role of CEACAM1 in T-cell activation and mammary epithelial cell polarization.  He is also exploring the relationship of the immune system and genetics to fibromyalgia.
 
Terry Lee, Ph.D. - Optimizing the application of biomolecule mass spectrometry
Dr. Lee’s focus is optimizing the application of biomolecule mass spectrometry to “real-world” biological problems. He develops new methods for proteomic analyses by mass spectrometry including integrated microfluidic systems for sample preparation and automated methods of data acquisition and analysis.
 
Markus Kalkum, Ph.D. - Develops novel biochemical and mass spectrometric methods
Dr. Kalkum develops novel biochemical and mass spectrometric methods for the sensitive detection of functional biomolecules in complex samples. His goal is to improve the early diagnosis of emerging and frequently under-diagnosed diseases, including opportunistic fungal and bacterial infections common in transplant recipients.
 
Nagarajan Vaidehi, Ph.D. - Devises computational approaches
Dr. Vaidehi devises computational approaches to study the structure, function and dynamics of G-protein coupled receptors. Of particular interest is the interaction of chemokines, and antagonists to the chemokine receptors, that trigger leukocyte migration in immune response and inflammation. By predicting binding-site interactions of agonists and antagonists with the receptors, the drug development process is greatly streamlined.
 
Zuoming Sun, Ph.D. - Studies the mechanisms controlling T-cell activation and survival
Dr. Sun’s lab studies the mechanisms controlling T-cell activation and survival. Activation and survival of T-lymphocytes control the quality and magnitude of immune response. Manipulation of T-cell activity is therefore one of the most important treatments for 1) enhancing immune responses against pathogens and tumors and 2) inhibiting the immune responses involved in autoimmune diseases and transplant rejection.
 

Immunology Faculty

Immunology

Immunology

City of Hope’s Department of Immunology was established in 1972 by Charles Todd. At that time, immune-based therapies were used on a very limited basis in cancer treatment, reserved for conditions such as malignant melanoma and bladder cancer. Most immunotherapy treatments consisted of agents such as BCG and interferon.

The field of cancer immunology has grown by leaps and bounds, and a wide range of neoplastic diseases, including both hematologic malignancies and solid tumors,are routinely being treated with a well-stocked armamentarium of monoclonal antibodies and other immunotherapy methods.

The Department of Immunology continues its original vision, with a dual focus on both immunology and structural biology. It has seven principal investigators with research interests in cell and tumor immunology and structure analysis, who are aided by state-of-the-art facilities in mass spectrometry and NMR, as well as a computer cluster for computational chemistry.

The unique combination of biological and structural studies and the intensive exploration of structure-function relationships have created a thriving, productive environment that has encouraged fruitful collaboration among investigators at City of Hope and at other institutions.
 
Laboratory Research

John Shively, Ph.D. -  CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen) gene family
Dr. Shively's lab specializes in the CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen) gene family. In particular, he is researching the use of anti-CEA antibodies for tumor imaging and therapy and the role of CEACAM1 in T-cell activation and mammary epithelial cell polarization.  He is also exploring the relationship of the immune system and genetics to fibromyalgia.
 
Terry Lee, Ph.D. - Optimizing the application of biomolecule mass spectrometry
Dr. Lee’s focus is optimizing the application of biomolecule mass spectrometry to “real-world” biological problems. He develops new methods for proteomic analyses by mass spectrometry including integrated microfluidic systems for sample preparation and automated methods of data acquisition and analysis.
 
Markus Kalkum, Ph.D. - Develops novel biochemical and mass spectrometric methods
Dr. Kalkum develops novel biochemical and mass spectrometric methods for the sensitive detection of functional biomolecules in complex samples. His goal is to improve the early diagnosis of emerging and frequently under-diagnosed diseases, including opportunistic fungal and bacterial infections common in transplant recipients.
 
Nagarajan Vaidehi, Ph.D. - Devises computational approaches
Dr. Vaidehi devises computational approaches to study the structure, function and dynamics of G-protein coupled receptors. Of particular interest is the interaction of chemokines, and antagonists to the chemokine receptors, that trigger leukocyte migration in immune response and inflammation. By predicting binding-site interactions of agonists and antagonists with the receptors, the drug development process is greatly streamlined.
 
Zuoming Sun, Ph.D. - Studies the mechanisms controlling T-cell activation and survival
Dr. Sun’s lab studies the mechanisms controlling T-cell activation and survival. Activation and survival of T-lymphocytes control the quality and magnitude of immune response. Manipulation of T-cell activity is therefore one of the most important treatments for 1) enhancing immune responses against pathogens and tumors and 2) inhibiting the immune responses involved in autoimmune diseases and transplant rejection.
 

Immunology Faculty

Immunology Faculty

Overview
Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope is responsible for fundamentally expanding the world’s understanding of how biology affects diseases such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and diabetes.
 
 
Research Departments/Divisions

City of Hope is a leader in translational research - integrating basic science, clinical research and patient care.
 

Research Shared Services

City of Hope embodies the spirit of scientific collaboration by sharing services and core facilities with colleagues here and around the world.
 

Our Scientists

Our research laboratories are led by the best and brightest minds in scientific research.
 

City of Hope’s Irell & Manella Graduate School of Biological Sciences equips students with the skills and strategies to transform the future of modern medicine.
Develop new therapies, diagnostics and preventions in the fight against cancer and other life-threatening diseases.
 


NEWS & UPDATES
  • It was 2009 when a City of Hope patient in her 40s learned that the cancer she had been fighting for several years had metastasized to her lungs. Her medical team ran genetic tests on the tumor, but none of the drug therapies available at the time targeted the known mutations in the tumor cells. […]
  • Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is characterized by a rapidly-developing cancer in the myeloid line of blood cells, which is responsible for producing red blood cells, platelets and several types of white blood cells called granulocytes. Because AML grows rapidly, it can quickly crowd out normal blood cells, leadi...
  • Rachel Divine is a yoga therapist and patient leader for the Sheri & Les Biller Patient and Family Resource Center. She’s also a former City of Hope patient. When someone you know has cancer, even the word “cancer” can make you feel nervous, sleepless, depressed or more. But, as a yoga teacher for 15 ...
  •   Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when she was 9 years old, Gina Marchini accepted the fact that she would need insulin the rest of her life. Every day, she injected herself with the lifesaving hormone. She also carefully controlled her diet and monitored the rise and fall of her blood glucose with military...
  • The defeat of cancer will require a team effort. Nowhere is this more necessary (or apparent) than in efforts to combat two of the most deadly forms of the disease  – pancreatic cancer and triple-negative breast cancer. It’s the approach City of Hope is taking with its newly launched multidisciplinary teams, br...
  • It’s a reasonable question: Why is the National Cancer Institute funding a study on preventing heart failure? The answer is reasonable as well: Rates of heart failure are drastically high among childhood cancer survivors — 15 times higher than among people the same age who were never treated for cancer. T...
  • Many teenagers take a break from academics during the summer, but not the eight high school students enrolled in the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) Creativity Awards program at City of Hope. They took the opportunity to obtain as much hands-on research experience as possible, learning fro...
  • About one in eight women will develop breast cancer at some point in her life. In fact, breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women, behind skin cancer. Although women can’t change some risk factors, such as genetics and the natural aging process, there are certain things they can do to lower thei...
  • As genetic testing becomes more sophisticated, doctors and their patients are finding that such tests can lead to the discovery of previously unknown cancer risks. In his practice at City of Hope, Thomas Slavin, M.D., an assistant clinical professor in the Division of Clinical Cancer Genetics, sees the full spe...
  • And the winners are … everyone in the San Gabriel Valley. The recipients of City of Hope’s first-ever Healthy Living grants have been announced, and the future is looking healthier already. In selecting San Gabriel Valley organizations to receive the grants, City of Hope’s Community Benefits Advisory Council ch...
  • Barry Leshowitz is a former City of Hope patient and a family advisor for the Sheri & Les Biller Patient and Family Resource Center. It’s been almost seven years since I checked into a local hospital in Phoenix for a hip replacement, only to be informed by the surgeon that he had canceled the surgery....
  • When it comes to science, the best graduate schools don’t just train scientists, they prepare their students for a lifetime of learning, accomplishment and positive impact on society. At City of Hope, the Irell & Manella Graduate School of Biological Sciences goes one step further – by preparing students to...
  • Cancer affects not just the cancer patient, but everyone around him or her, even after treatment is complete. The challenges can include the fear of cancer recurrence, coping with cancer’s economic impact and the struggle to achieve work-life balance post-treatment. Family members and loved ones of cancer patie...
  •   Bladder cancer facts: Bladder cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the tissues of the bladder. 2015 estimates: 74,000 new cases of bladder cancer diagnosed 16,000 deaths from bladder cancer (about 11,510 in men and 4,490 in women) Risk factors for bladder cancer: Smoking: Smokers...
  • Women with ovarian cancer have questions about the most promising treatment options, revolutionary research avenues, survivorship and, of course, the potential impact on their personal lives. Now, together in one place, are experts who can provide answers. On Saturday, Sept. 12, the 2015 Ovarian Cancer Survivor...