Control of human lymphocyte cell expansion in complex immune diseases

Control of human lymphocyte cell expansion in complex immune diseases

Project details

The balanced interplay of lymphocyte growth, survival and differentiation is essential for a healthy immune system. Upon antigen encounter the cells rapidly undergo multiple rounds of division, before stopping to divide and eventually die. In patients with immune disorders, this balance is disturbed so that they mediate an immune response that is either too strong (autoimmunity) or insufficient (primary immunodeficiency).

This project will use quantitative cellular and molecular assays established in the Bryant and Hodgkin laboratories to measure the regulation of the proliferative response and molecular expression kinetics in human T and B cells. Understanding the mechanisms and molecules controlling the expansion of human T and B cells will help understand how immune disorders form and may help to develop therapeutics targeting these processes.

About our research group

Our labs study the immune system with the goal of identifying the underlying functional causes for immune disorders. Experimental work to inform this effort focuses on the control of human immune cell fates such as cell division, differentiation and death. Typical experiments in the lab use flow cytometry and direct video imaging to measure the effect of changing conditions such as cytokines, altered genetic makeup, or the impact of pharmacological agents on individual cells and how they vary in a population. 

The concepts of this project are based on preliminary data from Dr Bryant and Prof Hodgkin’s labs, internationally-trained experts in human immunology, and the research tools they have developed, provide a highly competitive advantage in investigation of the causes of primary immunodeficiency.


Vanessa Bryant in the lab
Immunology division

Professor Phil Hodgkin

Professor Phil Hodgkin
Joint Division Head

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