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Mark Y. Sangster, Ph.D.

Contact Information

Phone Numbers

Appointment: (585) 276-3000

Biography

Research

Overview

Virus-specific antibodies play a key role in providing a protective barrier to infection and in facilitating viral clearance once an infection is established. Antibody-producing cells or plasma cells are generated from B cells that divide and differentiate following recognition of specific antigen. A critical requirement for optimal antibody responses is the cognate help delivered to activated B cells by CD4 T cells. This help is important for directing antibody isotype switching in B cells, the process by which B cells switch from expressing IgM to expressing alternative isotypes (such as IgG1, IgG2a, and IgA in the mouse) with different functional characteristics. In addition, cognate T cell help is critical if activated B cells are to participate in germinal center reactions, where affinity maturation of the antibody response takes place and the cellular elements of B cell memory are generated. These elements include long-lived plasma cells, which maintain high levels of protective antibodies, and a population of memory B cells that will respond with rapid antibody production on re-exposure to cognate antigen. This brief overview grossly simplifies a remarkable and complex process that is regulated at many levels in ways that modulate the kinetics, magnitude, and quality of the acute B cell response, as well as characteristics of dispersed plasma cell and memory B cell populations. In general terms, our research is aimed at understanding the characteristics of optimally effective B cell responses and applying this knowledge towards the improvement of vaccination regimens.

Specific Research Interests

Our specific research focus is the B cell response to viruses that infect the respiratory tract (with an emphasis on influenza virus) and to vaccination regimens designed to generate B cell-mediated protection against these viruses. Particular research interests include: (i) regulation of the acute B cell response to infection and vaccination and the differentiation pathways that generate B cell memory and virus-neutralizing antibodies, (ii) aspects of B cell memory (plasma cells, memory B cells) in the respiratory tract, including mechanisms of localization, role in protection, and relationship to form of immunization, and (iii) regulation of IgA production and the establishment of antibody-mediated protection at mucosal surfaces.

Credentials

Faculty Appointments

Education

1984
BS | Australia-U Western Australia - Perth
Genetics

1991
PhD | Australia-U Western Australia - Perth
Genetics

Awards

1991
Athelstan and Amy Saw Medical Research Award
Sponsor: University of Western Australia

1985
Australian Commonwealth Postgraduate Award for Dissertation Research

1984
Swan Brewery Prize for Undergraduate Honors Thesis
Location: University of Western Australia

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Publications

Journal Articles

9/15/2016
Jegaskanda S, Luke C, Hickman HD, Sangster MY, Wieland-Alter WF, McBride JM, Yewdell JW, Wright PF, Treanor J, Rosenberger CM, Subbarao K. "Generation and Protective Ability of Influenza Virus-Specific Antibody-Dependent Cellular Cytotoxicity in Humans Elicited by Vaccination, Natural Infection, and Experimental Challenge." The Journal of infectious diseases.. 2016 Sep 15; 214(6):945-52. Epub 2016 Jun 28.

10/15/2015
Halliley JL, Khurana S, Krammer F, Fitzgerald T, Coyle EM, Chung KY, Baker SF, Yang H, Martínez-Sobrido L, Treanor JJ, Subbarao K, Golding H, Topham DJ, Sangster MY. "High-Affinity H7 Head and Stalk Domain-Specific Antibody Responses to an Inactivated Influenza H7N7 Vaccine After Priming With Live Attenuated Influenza Vaccine." The Journal of infectious diseases.. 2015 Oct 15; 212(8):1270-8. Epub 2015 Apr 02.

10/2015
Rangel-Moreno J, de la Luz Garcia-Hernandez M, Ramos-Payan R, Biear J, Hernady E, Sangster MY, Randall TD, Johnston CJ, Finkelstein JN, Williams JP. "Long-Lasting Impact of Neonatal Exposure to Total Body Gamma Radiation on Secondary Lymphoid Organ Structure and Function." Radiation research.. 2015 Oct 0; 184(4):352-66. Epub 2015 Sep 23.

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