Meet our Students

2018-19 Immunology PhD Graduates


(left to right: Dr. David Golan, Rong En Tay, Jeffrey Lian, Nicholas Giovannone, Christopher Garris, Dr. Shiv Pillai, Guadalupe Jasso, Vini Mani, Sydney Lavoie, Debattama Sen, Angela Boroughs, Megan Eruzione, Dr. Davie Van Vactor)





Below you will see our current students' hometowns & their research interests

G1 Students


Elliot Akama-Garren. Palo Alto, CA. "I’m interested in understanding how the immune system regulates the balance between autoimmunity and tolerance, and in particular how this balance may be manipulated to alleviate human disease."

Sabrina Bracero. Manassas, VA.“Broadly autoimmunity and neuro-immunology”

Collins Cheruiyot. Eldoret, Kenya. "Interested in the mechanisms of primary, adaptive and acquired resistance to immune checkpoint blockade"

Kaitavjeet Chowdhary. Glastonbury, CT. "Tolerance, autoimmunity, genomics"

Elena Christian. Manassas, VA

Joshua De Sousa Casal. Toronto, Canada.“I am interested in tissue immunology and understanding the mechanisms through which the immune system establishes tolerance at these sites. Furthermore, I am also particularly interested in the diseases that develop from the failure of these mechanisms.”

Doremi (Xinyi) Feng. Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China “T cells, lymphocyte development/activation/regulation, tumor immunology”

Jasmin Joseph-Chazan. Los Angeles.“I am interested in neoantigen discovery and recognition, as well as engineering immune cells to more effectively recognize and attack diseased cells, specially in cancer and neurological disorders.”

Rakeeb Kureshi. Albany, NY. "I’m interested in cancer immunology and the role of immune checkpoint receptors in regulating tumor infiltrating lymphocytes."

Miguel Marin-Rodero. Madrid, Spain“Mechanisms of tolerance with special focus on the role of Treg.”

Kelly McGovern. Walpole, MA. "Neuro-immunology"

Daniel Michelson. Philadelphia. "T cell tolerance, autoimmunity, genomics"

Jossef Osborn. Huron, South Dakota. "Lymphocyte differentiation, humoral and cell-mediated immunity, mucosal immunology, tuberculosis, immunotherapies"

Thomas Xu. Fresh Meadows, NY. "I am interested in T and B cell antigen recognition, signaling, and collaboration against evasive pathogens such as HIV."





G2 Students

(left to right)

Emily Goering. Platte City, MO.“I am interested in T-cell function in the context of cancer immunology and other disease. I am also interested in broad host-pathogen interactions.”

Kurt Kongthong. Bangkok, Thailand“I'm interested in crosstalk between immune cells and non-immune cells and its roles during homeostasis, inflammation, and repair."

Anze Godicelj. Celje, Slovenia "I want to understand why most patients do not benefit from immune treatments and how best to stimulate antitumoral immune response in these patients.”

Kayleigh Ingersoll. Boise, Idaho.“T Cell Trafficking in Graft Versus Host Disease”

Michael Xifaras. Acushnet, MA.“The intersection of immunology, epigenetics, and cancer biology. I am interested in understanding the transcriptional programs that govern T-cell mediated immunity within the context of cancer.”

Lucas Pomerance. Weston, MA.“I am interested in cancer immunology, particularly understanding antigen presentation in cancer cells and hematopoietic cells within tumors

Catherine Jacon-Dolan. Arlington, MA.

Ryan Camire. Norton, MA.Neuro-immunology and vascular biology. Specifically, I aim to study how peripheral inflammatory signals shape functioning of brain endothelium.

Marie-Angele Messou. Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.Immune cells-sensory neurons interaction at the nasal mucosa

Elizabeth Byrne. Cambridge, MA.


G3 Students

(left to right, top to bottom)

Sara Rubin. Abington, PA“Broadly, I am interested in investigating immune cell development and function in the context of human disease. I am particularly interested in cancer immunology, transplant immunology, and neuroimmunology.”

Patrick Lenehan. Cheshire, CT “I am planning to study immune tolerance in Dr. Turka's lab with a focus on metabolism and/or epigenetic programming of regulatory T cells.”

Anh Cao.Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) Vietnam “I am interested in developmental and evolutionary aspect of immunology especially at the regulation of transcription.”

Omar Yaghi. Austin, TX “Broadly, autoimmunity and cancer immunology”
Jenna Collier. Nova Scotia, Canada "Comparing T cell function in the context of autoimmunity and immune-related adverse events in the context of checkpoint blockade"

Paris Pallis. Thessaloniki, Greece “I study the mechanism and function of intravascular crawling of effector T-cells during viral infection.”

Teshika Jayewickreme. Naperville, IL “My current interests are in host-pathogen interactions as well as mechanisms of tolerance.”

Nghia Millard. Gilbert, AZ “Cancer immunology, interaction between innate and adaptive immunity, immune memory, microbiome, T cell function.”

Sarah Weiss. Edina, MN “Intersection of immunology, systems biology and genomics Understanding how T cells integrate information about their environment to differentiate / activate appropriately .”

Aleksandra Prochera. New Village, Poland “Neuro-Immunology”

Haitong Mao. Singapore “I am interested in studying host-microbe interactions (both commensal microbiota and pathogens), and would like to explore how the host immune system and microbe influence and respond to each other.”
Joe Daccache. Lebanon I am interested in mechanisms of antibody regulation by different Follicular T cells in steady states and during infections

G4 Students

(left to right, top to bottom)

Dawn Comstock. Minnesota “Genetic regulation in immune responses and cancer immunotherapy.”
Rebecca Larson. Massachusetts I am interested in the tumor intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms of resistance to CAR T cell therapy.
Grace (Yiyun) Cao. Illinois “Innate immunity, tissue resident cells, type 2 immunity.”
Katherine Tooley. New York “My research interests include T cell signaling and function, both in the context of tolerance and cancer immunology. I am also interested in how genetic factors influence the immune system.”
Rocky Barilla. New York “Immune system development with the microbiome; tolerance and autoimmunity; organ-specific immune privilege.”
Travis Hughes. Oklahoma “Understanding infectious ecosystems using high-throughput single-cell genomics”
Juhi Kuchroo. Massachusetts “Role of co-inhibitory receptors in the regulation of autoimmunity and anti-tumor immunity”
Isabella Fraschilla. Georgia Unraveling SP140's epigenetic control of macrophages
Sophie Giguere. New Jersey “My research interests can be briefly described as: Antibody development and pathogen manipulation of the adaptive immune response.”
Ernest Aw. Singapore “My research interests are neuro-immune interactions in homeostasis, disease development and progression and tumour immunology.”


G5 Students

(left to right, top to bottom)

Tianli Xiao. Canada & China "Role of immunity in obesity-associated diseases"

Jeroen Tas. The Netherlands "Humoral immune responses, antigen processing, adaptive immunity."

John Mindur. New Jersey "Role of colony stimulating factors in immune-mediated inflammatory disease and steady-state."

Kenta Mosallanejad. Japan "Interaction between pathogen recognition and other intracellular signaling pathways"

Marie Siwicki. Pennsylvania

Alexandra Schnell. Frankfurt, Germany "T cell biology, autoimmunity and tolerance"

Alec Walker. Wisconsin "Specification of immune function by environmental cues during immune-neuron, immune-cancer interactions."

Jefte Drijvers. Netherlands "Metabolic regulation of T cell fate and functionality."


G6 Students

(left to right, top to bottom; excludes those who have graduated)


Carlos Donado. Colombia "My research interests include understanding how different innate lymphocytes, such as iNKT cells, can act as cellular adjuvants to induce transactivation of the inflammasome in phagocytes, especially in the context of microbial immune evasion. I am also interested in characterizing how certain DAMPs present during inflammatory responses contribute to the resolution of inflammation."

Nelson Lamarche. New Jersey "I am interested in autoimmunity, immunometabolism, and innate-like lymphocytes."

Alexander Mann. Oklahoma "Mechanisms that regulate the maintenance or disruption of immunological tolerance"

Charles Evavold. Georgia "I am investigating cell type heterogeneity in inflammasome activity and novel negative regulators of pyroptosis."

Jacob Turner. Ohio "NK cells, anti-viral immunity, lymphocyte development, neuro-immune interactions"

Jennifer Helble. Vermont "I'm interested in host-pathogen interactions, particularly the interactions between Chlamydia trachomatis and epithelial cells and how that interaction regulates host PD-L1/PD-1 signaling."

Christin Hong. California "CD4 T cell activation"

Rachel Cotton. California "The role CD1a-reactive T cells and lipid antigen in human skin."



G7 Students

(left to right, top to bottom; excludes those who have graduated)

Kelsey Finn. California"I am interested in studying regulatory T cell biology in the context of vaccine development."

William Orent.

Martin LaFleur. New York "I am very interested in how CD8 T cells are functionally suppressed in the tumor microenvironment. I am also interested in engineering these interactions for a more positive antitumor immune response."

Yu Hui Kang. Singapore "Mechanism of IL-10 mediated suppression"

Huiyuan Zhang. China. "Regulation of T cell function in tumor and autoimmunity."

Kailyn Stefan. Illinois. "Modulation of the immune system by the microbiome, mechanisms of tolerance and autoimmunity"









Student Body

2019-2020 Enrollment

Total enrollment: 70

Average Size of Incoming Class: 13

Average Time to Degree:

     Ph.D. Students: 5.89

     M.D./Ph.D. Students: 4.28




Student Publications

Check our our students' most recent publications here.



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of Harvard College