Philippa MarrackNational Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory, National Jewish Medical and Research Center, Denver, CO, USA F1000 Head of Faculty (since 17 July 2003)
MA Ph.D. Cambridge University (UK)
AAI, BSI, FRS, FAMS, Institute of Medicine (USA), National Academy of Sciences (USA).
Dr. Marrack is interested in the specificity, development, survival and function of T cells bearing alpha-beta receptors for antigen + MHC. Together with John Kappler she is establishing the rules that govern the interactions between T cells and the antigens they recognize, using methods ranging from X-ray crystallography to production of transgenic mice. Her laboratory is also studying the ways in which the vaccine adjuvant, alum functions. This material dramatically biases the immune response towards TH2 type cells. The laboratory's goal now is to understand how alum does this, and what the consequence of the phenomenon is for immunity and allergic responses. Amongst the many effects of alum on immune cells is its ability to improve immunological memory. Dr. Marrack would like to find out how this occurs and whether members of the Bcl-2 family, proteins that affect the lives and deaths of many cells, are involved. She is also interested in the reasons why immunity fades in older individuals and why the immune systems of males and females are not completely the same.
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