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Dale Umetsu
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Dale T.  Umetsu, MD, PhD

Department: Immunology
Research Centers: Immunology Research Center
Hospital Title: Senior Associate in Medicine
Academic Title: The Prince Turki al Saud Professor of Pediatrics
Research Area: The immunobiology of asthma and allergy

Research Overview

Dale Umetsu's laboratory focuses on the study of subpopulations of human and murine CD4+ T cells, which play a central role in the regulation of adaptive immunity and tolerance. The laboratory studies allergic diseases and asthma in humans and in mice as models of immune dysregulation, and examine the function of CD4+ �� TCR T cells with restricted cytokine profiles (Th1, Th2 and Th0 cells), CD4+ antigen-specific regulatory T cells (TReg), as well as iNKT cells in regulating these diseases. He is interested in the cellular, molecular and genetic mechanisms that control the interaction of T cells with dendritic cells, and that regulate cytokine synthesis in and the function of CD4+ T cells, which mediate development of, or protection against, disease.

Ongoing studies deal with the examination of:

  • The cellular and molecular mechanisms that drive polarization of cytokine synthesis in memory and naive populations of effector CD4+ T cells.
  • Subsets of CD4+ T cells, TReg cells in regulating the development of Th2 responses, respiratory tolerance and asthma.
  • The role and characteristics of iNKT cells in allergy and asthma.
  • How dendritic cells regulate respiratory tolerance induction, TReg cell development and iNKT cell function.
  • The TIM gene family, a family that we recently discovered, that regulates the development of Th1/Th2 responses, T cell activation, tolerance and asthma.
  • The influence of innate immunity to infection with influenza A virus, hepatitis A virus and Listeria monocytogenes on adaptive immunity, asthma and tolerance.

About Dale Umetsu

Dr. Umetsu graduated from Columbia University and received MD/PhD degrees from New York University. He then completed an internship and residency at Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School. He performed postdoctoral work at Boston Children's Hospital, before being appointed Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Stanford University. He was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure and to Professor at Stanford, and was Director of the Center for Asthma and Allergic Disesases, before moving back to Harvard and the Boston Children's Hospital, as the Prince Turki al Saud Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Immunology.

Key Publications

  • Akbari O, DeKruyff RH, Umetsu DT. 2001. Pulmonary dendritic cells secreting IL-10 mediate T cell tolerance induced by respiratory exposure to antigen. Nature Immunology. 2:725-31..
     
  • McIntire JJ, Umetsu SE, Omid Akbari, Potter M, Kuchroo V, Barsh GS, Freeman GJ, Umetsu DT, DeKruyff RH. 2001. Identification of Tapr, an airway hyperreactivity regulatory locus, and the associated Tim Gene Family. Nature Immunology. 2:1109-16.
     
  • Umetsu DT, McIntire JJ, Macaubas C, Akbari O, DeKruyff RH. 2002. Asthma: an epidemic of dysregulated immunity. Nature Immunology. 3:715-720.
     
  • Akbari O., Freeman GJ, Meyer EH, Greenfield EA, Chang TT, Sharpe AH, Berry G, DeKruyff RH and Umetsu DT. 2002. Antigen-specific regulatory T cells develop via the ICOS-ICOS-Ligand pathway and inhibit allergen-induced airway hyperreactivity. Nature Medicine. 8:1024-32.
     
  • Akbari O, Stock P, Meyer E, Kronenberg M, Sidobre S, Nakayama T, Taniguchi M, Grusby MJ, DeKruyff RH, and Umetsu DT. 2003. Critical role of NKT cells producing IL-4 and IL-13 in the development of allergen induced airway hyperreactivity. Nature Medicine. 9:582-88.
     
  • McIntire JJ, Umetsu SE, Macaubas C, Hoyte EG, Cinnioglu C, Cavalli-Sforza LL, Barsh GS, Hallmayer JF, Underhill PA, Risch NJ, Freeman GJ, DeKruyff RH, Umetsu DT. 2003. Hepatitis A virus link to atopic disease: Association of TIM-1 with atopy. Nature. 425:576.
     
  • Stock P, Akbari O, Berry G, Freeman GJ, DeKruyff,RH and Umetsu DT. 2004. Induction of TH1-like regulatory cells that express Foxp3 and protect against airway hyperreactivity. Nature Immunol. 5:1149-1156.
     
  • Umetsu SE, Lee W-L, McIntire JJ, Downey L, Sanjanwala B, Akbari O, Berry GJ, Nagumo H, Freeman GJ, Umetsu DT, DeKruyff RH. 2005. TIM-1 induces T cell activation and inhibits the development of peripheral tolerance. Nature Immunol. 6:447-54.

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