Dissecting the induction and integration of T cell migration cues

Dissecting the induction and integration of T cell migration cues

Project details

Our immune system consists of specialised cells that collaborate to defeat invading pathogens. The integration of migration signals helps balance protective and detrimental fates, leading to protection from infection or promotion of autoimmune disease. How cells navigate these interactions is a dilemma of critical importance to human health globally. 

This study will use tissue clearing and 3D whole lymph node imaging to determine how essential migration cues are turned on during vaccination, acute and chronic viral infection. Further how complex migration signals are integrated by activated T cells will be determined using time-lapse imaging.  

Techniques to be used:  

  • Vaccine and viral infection models

  • Florescent reporters

  • Tissue clearing and 3D whole lymph node imaging

  • Time-lapse imaging of migration

  • Flow cytometry

Microscopic image of lymph node
This image shows a cleared, 3D image of lymph node indicating chemokine expressing cells (blue and red).
Blood vessels are stained (white) to show lymph node architecture. We use this technology to identify and
locate chemokine-expressing cells following vaccine, acute and viral infection. Understanding how immune
cell migration is regulated offers opportunities to therapeutically promote and disrupt essential cellular
interactions to prevent and treat infectious disease. 


About our research group

Our immune system requires flexibility to protect us against numerous and varied infectious agents. Following infection, immune cells integrate pathogen-specific signals to promote the dynamic migration and interactions required to determine cell differentiation and function. Our lab investigates multiple mechanisms that work together to direct flexible protective responses. 

Our research combines pathogen models, reporter mice, advanced imaging, and transcriptional analysis to dissect the networks that control cell fate and enable flexibility in immune responses. We use these advanced approaches to identify new therapeutic avenues to drive immune responses either towards protection or away from autoimmunity.    





Dr Joanna Groom

Dr Joanna Groom at a microscope
Laboratory Head
Verena Wimmer profile picture
Systems Biology and Personalised Medicine division

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