Tiffany A. Reese, Ph.D.

Title
Assistant Professor
Department
Immunology and Microbiology
Institution
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Address
6000 Harry Hines Blvd.
City, State, Zip
Dallas, TX 75390
Phone
(214) 648-5853
E-mail
tiffany.reese@utsouthwestern.edu
Website
http://www.tiffanyreeselab.org
Research Field
Immunology
Award Year
2018

Research

The Reese lab will probe how maternal infections influence the development of fetal immunity. In developing countries, chronic viral or parasitic infections during pregnancy are quite common. Such chronic infections can shape the immune system of the mother—and can alter the immunity of the developing embryo. But the factors responsible are not well-understood. In a preliminary study, we have found that the offspring of mice infected with intestinal worms during pregnancy are more susceptible to infection with the flu virus, even as adults. Now, our group will determine how the immune cells of mice born from infected mothers differ from those with healthy mothers and assess whether these changes alter the animals’ ability to clear viral infections in infancy and later in life. We will also analyze whether maternal inflammation or changes to the offspring’s intestinal microbes play a role in this immune reprogramming. This work could lead to therapies for enhancing infant immunity and survival in the face of infection.

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