Philips Lab Research

Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) causes tuberculosis (TB), one of the world’s most deadly infections. Mtb has infected humans for millennia and is highly adapted to navigate the complexity of the human immune system. What accounts for successful host resistance to Mtb and why does it fail in 10% of infected individuals? We are identifying and characterizing host-pathogen interactions that allow Mtb to evade the innate and adaptive immune system. We are interested in gaining a mechanistic understanding of how Mtb alters cellular trafficking, antigen presentation, and cytokine response of macrophages and dendritic cells in order to persist within the host. In studying the molecular mechanisms by which Mtb sabotages host cellular functions, we hope to better understand host immunity and bacterial pathogenesis, enabling the development of new therapeutics and vaccines.