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Chief, Division of Hematology Elizabeth Thomas Professor of Medicine, Microbiology and Immunology Associate Director of Translational Science, UNC-Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center Director, Cellular Therapy Program, UNC Medical Center

Areas of Interest

Biology of acute and chronic Graft-versus-host disease after allogeneic stem cell transplantation; Enhancing the function of adoptive cellular therapy to treat solid tumors; Function of B lymphocytes in the tumor microenvironment of solid tumors; Use of nanocarrier platforms to induce anti-tumor immunity


Over the past decades, my laboratory and I have been interested in how to harness or enhance the immune system to treat disease. Our first studies evaluated why acute GvHD after allogeneic bone marrow transplant involved a specific number of organs regardless of the degree of MHC mismatch. We demonstrated a critical role for chemokine receptors and ligands in the trafficking of immune cells after transplantation and that GvHD occurred at sites with antigen presenting cells that were activated by pathogen associated molecular molecular patterns. Our most recent work has focused on the role of B lymphocytes in the anti-tumor immune response and characterizing antibodies generated by tumor-associated B cells. Finally, we have developed novel approaches to enhance adoptive cellular therapy (ACT) of solid tumors by activating the STING pathway during the administration of ACT.

Education and Training

  • Undergraduate University of Virginia
  • Medical School University of Virginia School of Medicine
  • Residency University of North Carolina Hospital
  • Fellowship University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Fellowship Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center