Cooperative Center for Human Immunology

The Rockefeller University received funding from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) for a Cooperative Center on Human Immunology (CCHI) at The Rockefeller University (U19AI111825). Our center is highly integrated and is based on long-term, productive collaborations between the investigators on defining underlying principles of human immunology, utilizing the infrastructure of the Rockefeller University Hospital, the Zanvil Cohn Vaccine Center, and the Rockefeller University Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA). The research projects are designed as hypothesis-testing, mechanistic studies, examining novel aspects of the activation and regulation of human immune responses in the context of vaccination against infectious disease. The goal of this program is to perform directed investigations into the evolution of lasting, protective immune responses in humans in order to better understand the requirements of effective vaccines and adjuvants.

The participating investigators are pioneers in identifying and characterizing basic mechanisms of the human immune response, having contributed to the initial characterizations of the dendritic cell, the diversity of IgG antibody effector functions and description of Fc receptors as mediators of immunity, the development of the first models for study of the hepatitis C virus, and the identification of multiple HCV receptors. For more information on each investigator please click here.

While significant progress in basic immunology research over the last three decades has resulted in numerous medical advances, a much more substantial understanding of coordinated molecular mechanisms involved in eliciting immunity will be required to enable judicious vaccine design, particularly for diseases for which no vaccines currently exits. The objective of this proposal is to draw on the broad expertise in immunity and infectious diseases within the collaborating laboratories to define the contributions of critical components, such as dendritic cells, monocytes and immune complexes in the generation and maintenance of effective immune responses to infectious agents.

The CCHI studies are based on analyses of samples where volunteers were immunized or delivered an immune adjuvant. The FDA approved vaccines to be studied are known to elicit durable immunity and are therefore appropriate for use in studying the molecular underpinnings of effective vaccine responses. Via studies of primary cells and sera taken pre- and post-vaccination or adjuvant administration, hypotheses will be explored with the goal of defining molecular pathways that contribute to formation of protective immunity.

The purpose of this website is to allow for interested parties to access information on the investigators, CCHI, and each research project and core, as well as advertise ongoing related clinical trials, announce pilot project awards made under the CCHI, and provide further information related to publications and past presentations from members of the CCHI and its External Scientific Advisory Group.