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Quantifying and Modifying the Microbiome-Immune Relationship

Date Wed, Feb 19
Time 11: 00 AM - 2: 00 PM
Location Georgetown University
4000 Reservoir Road NW, Warwick Evans Conference Room, Building D, Washington, DC, 20007
Contact Rebecca Ho

GHUCCTS KL2 scholar Dr. Kate Michel presents her symposium: "Quantifying and Modifying the Microbiome-Immune Relationship" featuring keynote speaker Dr. Nichole Klatt from the University of Minnesota.

ABSTRACT: This mini-symposium focuses on characterizing the microbiome—immune system relationship, in both health and disease, as well as across microbial communities in the body. Research in past 20 years has established that dynamic communication occurs between commensal microbes, immune cells, and epithelial cells—however much still remains unknown. Presenters will also discuss methods to modify the microbiome-immune relationship to improve health outcomes (e.g. probiotics). Nichole Klatt, PhD, the keynote speaker, will speak about her research on the vaginal microbiome in the context of HIV infection and the potential role of probiotics in boosting vaccine immunogenicity and efficacy.

Headshot of Dr. Nichole Klatt from the University of MinnesotaKEYNOTE SPEAKER: Dr. Nichole Klatt is the Vice Chair of Research, Adrienne Arsht Endowed Chair in Pediatric Clinical Research, and Associate Professor at the University of Miami. The Klatt lab focuses on understanding the microbiome relative to drug metabolism, mucosal immunology and host processes in HIV infection This includes a multitude of projects, including refinement of tissue culture methods and characterization of factors affecting HIV vaccination in non-human primates. The Klatt lab’s recent groundbreaking research identified that vaginal bacteria can metabolize HIV antiviral drugs, impacting vaginal microbicide efficacy.

Photo of KL2 Scholar Kate MichelKL2 SCHOLAR: Kate Michel, MPH PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the School of Medicine at Georgetown University. Her research focuses on mucosal microbiomes and communication with the immune system in the context of elite control of HIV and cervical cancer. She also leads a geospatial analysis of factors affecting pre-term and low birth weight births in Washington, DC. Her previous work has included characterizing the cervicovaginal immune and epithelial response to hormonal contraception use. She received her PhD in Immunology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and her MPH in Global Epidemiology from Emory University.


  • Bing Ma, PhD
  • Raja Mazumder, MS, PhD
  • Ian Myles, MD, MPH
  • Pinaki Panigrahi, MD, PhD

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