Avram Lab

Pulmonary Labs


Dorina Avram, PhD
Theodore Drashansky, PhD Student
Eric Helm, PhD Student
Xiaoping Linda Luo, MD
Monica Moore, Undergraduate student
Upasana Parthasarathy, PhD Student
Kevin Luque-Sanchez, Undergraduate student
Zhiwei Xu, PhD
Mu Yu, PhD Student
Ashley Zuniga, PhD Student

Avram Lab
Dorina Avram, PhD
Preeminence Professor
Associate Chair, Anatomy & Cell Biology
Avram Lab
Xiaoping Linda Luo | Laboratory Manager
Avram Lab
Theodore Drashansky | PhD Student
Avram lab
Ashley Zuniga, PhD Student
Eric Helm, PhD Student
Upasana Parthasarathy, PhD Student

Research Interests

  • Epigenetic and transcriptional control in immune responses – impact on immune homeostasis and autoimmune diseases
  • Harnessing the immune responses for cancer therapies
  • Ubiquitin ligases in multiple sclerosis and neuro-inflammation
  • Ubiquitin ligases in inflammatory bowel diseases and colon cancer
  • New therapies for multiple sclerosis – collaboration with Dr. Keselowsky – Bioengineering

Current Research Projects/Grants

  • R01 AI133623 (NIH/NIAID) (multi-PI Keselowsky, Avram) 2017-June 2022, Tolerogenic dual microparticle system for treatment of multiple sclerosis
  • R01 AI067846-12 (NIH/NIAID) (Avram, PI) 2019-2024, Bcl11b in CD4+ T cells and innate lymphoid cells

Completed Research Projects/Grants

  • NIH/NIAID R21 AI13120501A1 (Avram, PI); Transcriptional control of genes implicated in suppression function of Treg cells, 7/1/2017–6/30/2019.
  • National Multiple Sclerosis Society: (Avram, PI) A novel ubiquitin ligase with role in EAE severity – 2014-2018.
  • NIH/NIAID R01-AI067846-11 (Avram, PI) Role of BCL11B in CD4+ T Cells, 09/16/07-01/31/18.
  • NIH/NIAID 1R21AI112492-01 (Avram, PI; Transcriptional control in innate lymphoid type II cells, 07/01/2014 – 06/30/2016.
  • NIH/NIAID  R01-AI078273 (Avram, PI); Bcl11b in immune regulation, 03/01/08-06/30/14.
  • National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Disease K01 AR-02194  (Avram, PI); A novel zinc finger transcriptional modulator of T cells, 08/01/01-07/31/06.
  • American Cancer Society: Transcriptional Regulatory Function of the Novel Oncoproteins CTIP/BCL11; 2004-2009.
  • Leukemia Fund (Avram, PI); Role of BCL11 Transcription Factors in Leukemia and Lymphoma, 05/1/06-8/31/08.


FEBS Fellowship, 1990
NATO Fellowship, 1991
IREX Fellowship, 1992
Soros Foundation Fellowship, 1993
American Society for Enology and Viticulture Fellowship, 1993-1996
NIH-K01 Career Development Award, National Institute of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, Arthritis Branch, 2001-2006
American Cancer Society Research Scholar, 2004-2008


Danielle Califano, Jonathan J. Cho, Qi Yang, Avinash Bhandoola, Hongmin Li and Dorina Avram. Transcription factor Bcl11b controls identity and function of mature innate lymphoid cells type II. Immunity. 2015 Aug 18;43(2):354-68. | PubMed

Erin Y. Harmon, Van Fronhofer, III, Rebecca S. Keller, Paul J. Feustel, Xinmei Zhu, Hao Xu, Dorina Avram, David M. Jones, Shanmugam Nagarajan and Michelle R. Lennartz. Anti-inflammatory Immune Skewing is Atheroprotective: Apoe-/-Fc?RIIb-/- Mice Develop Fibrous Carotid Plaques. J Am Heart Assoc. 2014 Dec 16;3(6). pii: e001232. | PubMed

Dorina Avram & Danielle Callifano. The multifaceted roles of Bcl11b in thymic and peripheral T cells – impact on immune diseases. J Immunol. 2014 Sep 1;193(5):2059-2065. | PubMed

Mohammad Uddin, Yubin Zhang, Jonathan Harton, Katherine MacNamara, Dorina Avram. TNF-a-dependent hematopoiesis following Bcl11b deletion in T cells restricts metastatic melanoma. J Immunol. 2014 Feb 15;192(4):1946-53. | PubMed

Califano D, Van Valkenburgh J, Yager E, O’Connor W, Kennedy J, Avram D. Diverting Thelper cell trafficking through increased plasticity attenuates autoimmune encephalomyelitis. J Clin Invest. 2014 Jan 2;124(1):174-87. (PMID: 24316973). | PubMed

Yubin Zhang, Maura Jones, Gary M. Winslow, Dorina Avram and Katherine C. MacNamara. MyD88-Signaling in CD4 T Cells is Critical for IFNG Production and Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cell Expansion in Response to Intracellular Bacterial Infection. J Immunol. 2013 May 1;190(9):4725-35. | PubMed

Van Valkenburgh J, Albu DI, Bapanpally C, Casanova S, Califano D, Jones DM, Ignatowicz L, Kawamoto S, Fagarasan S, Jenkins NA, Copeland NG, Liu P, Avram D. Critical role of Bcl11b in suppressive function of T regulatory cells and prevention of inflammatory bowel disease. J Exp Med 208(10):2069-2081, 2011. | PubMed

Zhang S, Rozell M, Albu DI, Randall T, Jenkins NA, Copeland NG, Liu P, Avram D. Antigen-specific clonal expansion and cytolytic effector function of CD8+ T lymphocytes depend on the transcription factor Bcl11b. J Exp Med 207(8):1687-99, 2010. | PubMed

Albu DI, Jeffrey Van Valkenburgh, Nicole Morin, Danielle Califano, Jenkins NA, Copeland NG, Liu P, Avram D. Transcription factor Bcl11b controls selection of invariant natural killer T-cells by regulating glycolipid presentation in double-positive thymocytes. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 108(15):6211-6, 2011. | PubMed

Visit Pubmed for a full list of references


Kyle Lorentsen
Jonathan Cho
Mohammad Uddin, PhD
Dil Sultana, PhD
Danielle Califano, PhD
Safi Moshkani, PhD
Jeff Van Valkenburgh
Sarah Casanova
Raj Verma, PhD
Chandra Bapanpally, PhD
Diana Albu, PHD
Mike Rozell, MD
Vali Cisamasiu, PhD