Immunology Faculty Member - Marcus Altfeld, MD, PhD

Marcus Altfeld, MD, PhD

Professor of Medicine, HMS
Director, Innate Immunity Program

Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard
Massachusetts General Hospital
400 Technology Square
Cambridge, MA 02139
Tel: 857-268-7001

The Altfeld laboratory studies innate and adaptive immune responses in viral infections.

The laboratory has four major areas of interest: a) The analysis of HIV-1-specific CD8+ T cell responses in Acute Infection, with particular focus on the mechanisms that determine the functionality and immunodominance of HIV-1-specific CD8+ T cell responses during the initial phase of HIV-1 infection. b) The analysis of Innate Immune Responses in HIV-1 infection, specifically focusing on the role of NK cells in HIV-1 infection and the impact of Toll-like Receptor (TLR) ligands on the function of NK and T cells. c) Thirdly, we are involved in monitoring changes in the HIV-1-specific T cell response in HIV-1-infected individuals undergoing therapeutic immunizations to understand the immune correlates of viral control. d) Finally, we are interested in characterizing the HIV-1 specific immune responses in populations of different ethnicities affected by the HIV-1 epidemic, and have close collaboration with the HIV-1 Pathogenesis Program at the Nelson Mandela School of Medicine at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Durban, South Africa, the National Center for AIDS/STD Control and Prevention (NCAIDS) at the Chinese CDC in Beijing, and the Department of Infectious Diseases at the Tangdu Hospital in Xi’an, China.

Last Update: 7/14/2014


1: Alter G, Heckerman D, Schneidewind A, Fadda L, Kadie CM, Carlson JM, Oniangue-Ndza C, Martin M, Li B, Khakoo SI, Carrington M, Allen TM, Altfeld M. HIV-1 adaptation to NK-cell-mediated immune pressure. Nature. 2011 Aug 3;476(7358):96-100.

2: Altfeld M, Fadda L, Frleta D, Bhardwaj N. DCs and NK cells: critical effectors in the immune response to HIV-1. Nat Rev Immunol. 2011 Mar;11(3):176-86. Review.

3: Streeck H, Kwon DS, Pyo A, Flanders M, Chevalier MF, Law K, Jülg B, Trocha K, Jolin JS, Anahtar MN, Lian J, Toth I, Brumme Z, Chang JJ, Caron T, Rodig SJ, Milner DA Jr, Piechoka-Trocha A, Kaufmann DE, Walker BD, Altfeld M. Epithelial adhesion molecules can inhibit HIV-1-specific CD8
T-cell functions. Blood. 2011 May 12;117(19):5112-22.

4: Alter G, Kavanagh D, Rihn S, Luteijn R, Brooks D, Oldstone M, van Lunzen J, Altfeld M. IL-10 induces aberrant deletion of dendritic cells by natural killer cells in the context of HIV infection. J Clin Invest. 2010 Jun 1;120(6):1905-13.

5: Meier A, Chang JJ, Chan ES, Pollard RB, Sidhu HK, Kulkarni S, Wen TF, Lindsay RJ, Orellana L, Mildvan D, Bazner S, Streeck H, Alter G, Lifson JD, Carrington M, Bosch RJ, Robbins GK, Altfeld M. Sex differences in the Toll-like receptor-mediated response of plasmacytoid dendritic cells to HIV-1. Nat Med. 2009 Aug;15(8):955-9.

6: Alter G, Martin MP, Teigen N, Carr WH, Suscovich TJ, Schneidewind A, Streeck H, Waring M, Meier A, Brander C, Lifson JD, Allen TM, Carrington M, Altfeld M. Differential natural killer cell-mediated inhibition of HIV-1 replication based on distinct KIR/HLA subtypes. J Exp Med. 2007 Nov 26;204(12):3027-36.

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