The Cellular Immune Monitoring Core (CIMC) lab interests focus on T-cell-mediated immunity and its functions, primarily against intracellular pathogens and in the context of vaccination. Dr. Costanzo, Chief of CIMC, and her team supports and provides the infrastructure, trained personnel and GCLP, state-of-the-art assays for assessing cell-mediated immunity generated by vaccine products within the MHRP pipeline.
Building on RV144, MHRP’s long term goal is to develop a safe and effective HIV-1 vaccine that protects people worldwide from acquisition of the virus. Understanding cellular responses post vaccination is crucial for informing the development of such preventative and therapeutic vaccines.
Cellular Immune Monitoring Core:
Flow Cytometry Core:
The primary objective of the Flow Cytometry Core is to support the HIV vaccine effort and basic immunologic research conducted at MHRP. This core contains state-of-the-art equipment, infrastructure, personnel, and expertise in flow cytometry. The Flow Core supports critical endpoint and research-based cellular assays to assess immunogenicity for clinical trials and immune characterization of natural HIV-1 infection in cohort studies conducted within the MHRP, as well as Ebola, ZIKA, MERS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2, and other vaccine trials and natural history cohorts.
Matt Creegan and his team maintain equipment and provide technical assistance as well as consulting through all phases of flow cytometry experimentation. The group provides flow cytometric analysis and cell sorting for researchers across MHRP, the WRAIR, and external collaborators. The program is currently striving to build upon immunomonitoring studies and develop discovery-based platforms for understanding vaccine-induced immune responses and their potential role in protection from disease. Examining cellular immune functions that are associated with more favorable disease outcomes will better inform vaccine evaluation.