SciLifeLab The Svedberg seminar series, Michael Gale, Programming immunity against viruses


Monday, September 17

Michael Gale

Center for Innate Immunity and Immune Disease,The University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington, USA

Michael Gale, Jr., PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Immunology at The University of Washington, School of Medicine. He is the Director of the UW Center for Innate Immunity and Immune Disease, an Adjunct Professor in the Departments of Microbiology and Global Health, and is an Affiliate Member of Vaccine and Infectious Disease Division of the Fred Hutchinson Center Research Center. He is also a Core Staff Scientist of the Washington Regional Primate Research Center.

Research in the Gale lab is focused on understanding the molecular processes of innate immunity, including the role of innate immunity in immune recognition, control of virus infection, and immune programming. The overarching goal in the lab is to define the processes of innate immunity that direct a successful immune response for the control of disease. A major focus of this work is to define therapeutic targets to enhance innate immunity for the control of virus infection, enhancing vaccine efficacy, and as anti-cancer immunotherapeutics.

Dr. Gale is a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, and since 2014 his research has been identified by Thompson-Reuters as among the top 1% cited in the field of Microbiology. Dr. Directs the Function Genomics Core Laboratory for AIDS Vaccine Development, which includes a formal collaboration with the lab of Jan Komorowski at Uppsala University.  Dr. Gale teaches virology, immunology, infectious disease biology, and public health to medical students and graduate students, is a member of the editorial board of several biomedical research journals, and serves as the Editor in Chief of the Journal of Interferon and Cytokine Research.

Talk titleProgramming immunity against virus infection

Innate immune defenses are essential for restricting virus replication and for programming the adaptive immune response against infection. Studies in the Gale lab apply molecular, virologic, and functional genomics in a Systems Biology approach to define the molecular basis of immune programming and protection. The lab has a major focus on understanding how pathogen recognition receptor interactions and signaling events triggered by viral pathogen associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) function to drive innate antiviral immunity and program/enhance the adaptive immune response to RNA virus infection, HIV infection, and vaccination. Their work has defined specific pathogen recognition receptors and related signaling pathways in the infected cell as the central initiators of the immune response. For RNA viruses, the lab has shown that the RIG-I-like receptors are critical factors in the recognition of infection and signaling to mediate immune protection against disease initiated through specific RLR-PAMP interactions. The lab is now applying the principles of PAMP/RIG-I interactions to target RIG-I and RLR signaling through small molecule therapeutics aimed at suppressing virus infection and enhancing immunity. The lab is also engaged in defining the molecular basis of immune protection directed by vaccines against SIV models of AIDS as applied to specific vaccine strategies. Functional genomics approaches reveal specific roles for innate immune programming of cytokine interactions for protection against SIV and onward to HIV. The molecular basis of immune programming will be discussed.

Host: Jan Komorowski (jan.komorowski@icm.uu.se)