The Center for Immunology is an interdisciplinary research program at the University of Minnesota devoted to advancing the field of immunology and educating future immunologists.

Autoimmunity Cancer Vaccines Cures

  • Naive B Cells with High-Avidity Germline-EncodedAntigen Receptors Produce Persistent IgM+andTransient IgG+Memory B Cells

    Immune memory often lasts for life, this is not the case for certain vaccines in some individuals. By studying B cell responses to phycoerythrin, in the June 2018 issue of Immunity, Pape et al. find that memory B cell responses can be shortlived when generated from precursors that experience unusually strong early signals of avid antigen binding via germline-encoded VH elements. Read more

  • Beura, Et Al, Nature Immunology paper 19,173-182 (2018)

    Intravital mucosal imaging of CD8+ resident memory T cells shows tissue-autonomous recall responses that amplify secondary memory

    Using two-photon intravital microscopy to visualize the responses of CD8resident memory T cells (Trm cells), Post Doctoral fellows in Masopust, Vezys, and Fife labs found that the Trm cells were highly motile but would pause and undergo in situ division after antigen challenge. Read more

  • Co-housing with pet store mice changes the immune system of laboratory mice

     Nature  highlights the work of Lalit Beura, Sara Hamilton, Marc Jenkins, Vaiva Vezys, Steve Jameson, Dave Masopust, and their evidence of how laboratory rodents can skew immunology research but that "dirty mice" can clean up the results. Read more

  • Cutting Edge: Dual TCRa Expression Poses an Autoimmune Hazard by Limiting Regulatory T cell Generation

    In cutting edge research performed by the students and Post Doctoral fellows in the labs of Fife, Hogquist and Binstadt the hypothesis that dual TCR expression can promote autoimmunity by limiting agonist selection of self-reactive thymocytes is revisited . Read more 

  • Chrysalis: A New Method for High-Throughput Histo-Cytometry Analysis of Images and Movies

    Advances in imaging have led to the development of powerful multispectral, quantitative imaging techniques, like histo-cytometry. The utility of this approach is limited, however, by the need for time-consuming manual image analysis. In an effort to address the time issue, Kotov and Pengo et al. created the software Chrysalis along with a suite of Imaris Xtensions to batch image processing and analysis to automate the processing workflow for confocal, epi-fluorescence, and two-photon microscopy images. Read more


  • CD8αα+ Intraepithelial Lymphocytes Arise from Two Major Thymic Precursors

    In an article published in Nature Immunology, Post Doctoral Fellows Ruscher and Lee from the Hogquist and Jameson lab wanted to better define the thymic IEL precursor, and were able to provide an important foundation for understanding the biology of CD8αα IELs. Read More


Latest News 

Dr. Brian Fife is awarded a research award from the Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics

fife CFI would like to congratulate Dr. Brian Fife, he has been awarded one of the five collaborative two-year research grants supported by the Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics. This marks the partnership's 16th year of spearheading new scientific ideas from Minnesota to improve health care for Minnesotans. The state-funded grants for these team science proposals total nearly $5.2 million and will target diabetes, stress-induced aging, immigration-related obesity, implantable drug testing devices and Alzheimer's disease, each team includes investigators from Mayo Clinic and the University of Minnesota. Dr. Fife's team aims to develop a cell replacement therapy to restore insulin-producing pancreatic islet beta cells and reduce autoimmune attacks on tissue. The goal is to develop designer islet beta cells and arm these cells with molecules to protect them from attack by the immune system. The application shows promise as a cure for and prevention of Type 1 diabetes. To learn more about the Fife lab, click here.


Dr. Kris Hogquist is selected as the 2019 AAI-Thermo Fisher Meritorious Career Award Recipient

Congratulations to Dr. Kris Hogquist, the 2019 AAI-Thermo Fisher Meritorious Career Award recipient. This award recognizes a mid-career scientist for outstanding research contributions to the field of immunology. Kris' research is focused on T cell development in the thymus, particularly positive and negative selection, tolerance, and T cell selection in immune homeostasis and response. AAI will honor Kris at the annual AAI meeting in San Diego, CA in May 2019.


Health Science Libraries offers full access to all Current Protocols journals

The Health Sciences Libraries now offer full-text access to all the Current Protocol journals including:Current Protocols in Immunology and Current Protocols in Molecular Biology. These titles offer step-by-step techniques, procedures, and practical overviews that provide researchers with reliable, efficient laboratory methods to ensure reproducible results. 


Meet your librarian
Sarah Jane Brown is a medical librarian and the liaison to the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. She is available to help navigate the varied landscape of medical and scientific literature by assisting you in conducting comprehensive literature searches, evaluating resources, and effectively using citation managers and other organizational tools. Get in to contact via email ( or by phone (612-625-3159).

Speaking Science: 8 tips for discussing your work

speaking science

On January 17, 2019, the University of Minnesota hosted a conference to help faculty, postdoctoral researchers, and graduate students more effectively share knowledge and research with audiences outside of acadamia. The conference brought faculty, post-doctoral researchers, and graduate students together from across disciplines at the University to improve their communication and storytelling skills. The one-day event, hosted by a collection of colleges and units from across the U of M Twin Cities, featured interactive training exercises, break-out sessions, and a keynote presentation by Emily Graslie, chief curiosity correspondent at Chicago’s Field Museum and creator and host of YouTube science channel “The Brain Scoop.” For those who couldn’t make it to the event, here are eight easy takeaways.  If you are interested in delving deeper into the art of oral presentation the Center for Immunology offers an yearly seminar series, known as the RED Seminars, standing for Relational Experience Development, the seminar series provides the principles of effective oral communication, examines deeper topics, and provides individual feedback. Please join us the first Monday of every month for the 2019 seminars: Mar. 4, April 1 and May 6 and June 6 at 9 a.m., the seminar is held in room CCRB 1-125.  All are welcome.


Dr. Marc Jenkins, director of the Center for Immunology, is named a University of Minnesota Regents Professor

marc 180x200The Center for Immunology would like to congratulate Dr. Marc Jenkins, as he is bestowed one of the University of Minnesota's highest honors, the Regents Professorship. This program not only recognizes the national and international prominence of the faculty member, but it also acknowledges the exceptional contributions that have been made to the University through teaching, research, scholarship, creative work, and collaboration with others.
Dr. Jenkins exemplifies all the characteristics of a Regents Professor and is one of the world’s most distinguished immunologists. Dr. Jenkins was honored at the Board of Regents meeting on Friday, September 14, 2018. 



More center news.                                                                                                             Meet our Faculty

Research ethics at the University of Minnesota

We are committed to protecting research participants, upholding ethical standards, and improving our practice at every step of our work.

Learn more about our commitment to research ethics 


U of MN Faculty

every Monday and Thursday

2:30 p.m. | 2-163 WMBB

February 25

Immunology Journal Club
Langlois Lab

9:00-10:00 a.m. | 2-115 CCRB
MICaB Invited Speaker Seminar

Michael Gale, Jr., Ph.D.
Department of Immunology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA

"Pathogen recognition and immune programming against flavivirus infection"

12:00-1:00 p.m.| 1-125 CCRB
PNI Seminar Series

Andrew Lees, PhD
Scientific Director, Fina Biosolutions
"Towards Affordable Conjugate Vaccines: Efficient Chemistry, Low Cost Carrier Protein and Supporting New Entrants"
1:15-2:15 p.m.| 3-100 Mayo (to view live, click here)

February 26

Cancer Center Seminar Series

Emily Mace, PhD
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Columbia University

"Novel requirements for human natural killer cell development"

9:00-10:00 a.m. | 1-125 CCRB

Infection and Immunity Research Conference

Betsy Hirsch, PharmD, RPh
Assistant Professor Department of Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology

12:00-1:00 p.m. | 1-101 MRF (lunch provided)

Dirty Mouse Focused Data Club

1:30-3:00 p.m.| 1-101 MRF

February 27

Immunology Supergroup

Fife Lab

1:30-2:30 p.m. | 1-125 CCRB

CVM Research Seminar Series

Vaiva Vezys, PhD
Dept. of Microbiology and Immunology, UMN

"T cell tolerance in autoimmunity and cancer"

3:00-4:00 p.m.| rm 125 Animal Science/Vet Med Bldg., St. Paul (to view, click here)

BME Graduate Seminar

Brittany Hartwell, PhD
Irvine Lab-Koch Institute

"Engineering antigen-specific immunotherapies and vaccines for controlled modulation of the immune response"

3:35-4:30 p.m.| 2-101 Nils Hasselmo Hall

Transplant Conference

Karam Obeid, M.D.
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases and International Medicine

“CMV Resistance, What Are Our Options?"

4:00-5:00 p.m. | Surgery Conference Room, 11-157 PWB    

February 28

MICaB Student Seminar

Alan Embry, Ph.D.
Deputy Director, Basic Sciences Program at National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD

"Research opportunities in M. tuberculosis, influenza and other respiratory pathogens"

12:00-1:00 p.m. | 1-110 LRB/MTRF

March 4

Immunology Journal Club
RED Seminar Series- week 3

9:00-10:00 a.m. | 1-125 CCRB

March 4

MICaB Invited Speaker Seminar

Maria Bettini, Ph.D. 
Department of Pediatrics, Section of Diabetes and Endocrinology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX

"Distinct T cell receptor repertoire shapes regulatory T cell function"

12:00-1:00 p.m.| 1-125 CCRB

March 4

EWIS Special Seminar

Aurora Center for Advocacy and Education presents:

"Changing STEM Culture: Using your power and position to promote inclusivity and end sexual harassment"

3:30-4:30 p.m. | 1-125 CCRB (RSVP here)

Looking for a place to write?

If you are writing and need a quiet place to gather your thoughts, we have a spot for you.

See Annette Bethke, 2-142 WMBB to check out the office key.