Ward Wakeland, Ph.D.

Professor & Chairman

Endowed Title: Edwin L. Cox Distinguished Chair in Immunology and Genetics

Department: Immunology

Graduate Programs: Immunology

Biography

My laboratory utilizes mouse genetics to delineate the genetic basis for autoimmune disease pathogenesis. Our primary focus has been on systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), a debilitating autoimmune disease initiated via a profound loss of immunologic tolerance to nuclear antigens. We have used genetic manipulation of the lupus-prone NZM2410 murine model of SLE to dissect SLE pathogenesis into a series of discrete stages.

We are currently in the process of identifying the individual susceptibility genes and defining the genetic pathways responsible for the initiation and progression of systemic autoimmunity in lupus-prone mouse models of SLE. Additional projects within the laboratory include genetic dissections of autoimmune diabetes and the analysis of a variety of polymorphisms in normal immune functions.

The use of microarray technology in combination with genetic fine mapping to identify polymorphic genes with potent immunologic effects is a major new thrust within the laboratory. There are currently six postdoctoral fellows, five graduate students, and eight technicians in our research group. I strongly encourage all postdoctoral fellows and students to obtain research fellowships as a component of their training.

Education

Graduate School University of Hawaii at Hilo (1976), Microbiology

Research Interests

  • Genetic variability in the immune system
  • Molecular genetics of susceptibility to autoimmune diseases

Publications

Featured Publications Legend

Featured Publications

Regulation of B cell tolerance by the lupus susceptibility gene Ly108

Kumar, K.R., Li, L., Yan, M, Bhaskarabhatla, M., Mobley, A.B., Nguyen, C., Mooney, J.M., Schatzle, J.D., Wakeland, E.K, and Mohan, C. Science 2006 312 1665-1669

From the cover: A Tlr7 translocation accelerates systemic autoimmunity in murine lupus

Subramanian, S., Tus, K., Li, Q.-Z., Wang, A., Tain, X.-H., Zhou, J., Liang, C., Barov, G., McDaniel, L.D., Zhou, X.J., Schultz, R.A., and Wakeland, E.K. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 2006 103 9970-9975

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Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Association of Immunologists
  • American Society for Microbiology
  • American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
  • Genetics Society of America
  • Mammalian Genome Society