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Home » Imaging-based Research » Christopher A. Hunter

Imaging-based Research

Christopher A. Hunter, Ph.D.

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Graduate Group Affiliations

Contact information
310F Hill Pavilion
380 S. University Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: 215-573-7772
Fax: 215-746-2295
B.Sc (Zoology, specializing in Parasitology)
University of Glasgow, 1985.
University of Glasgow, 1989.
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Description of Penn IMIG Expertise


Hunter Reserach PhotoThe goal of research in the Hunter laboratory is to better understand how the immune system responds to parasitic infections. Focusing specifically on Toxoplasma gondii, our studies explore host-pathogen interactions at the cellular level. In addition to using genetic approaches to identify specific parasite factors involved in these interactions, we hope to address fundamental questions about which immune cells are important in the initiation of adaptive immunity through the use of transgenic parasites. We are particularly interested in the role of cross-presentation in the development of T cell responses. This compliments our efforts to better define the cytokine networks that regulate the balance between protective and pathological immune responses. Currently the IL-6 family of cytokines (IL-6, 12, 27) are of particular interest to us. Lastly, we are working to better understand the pathogenesis of toxoplasmic encephalitis (TE) in immunocompromised hosts using a variety of imaging techniques to visualize T cell responses in the brain in real time.

Lab expertise and resources:

  • Immunohistochemistry and multiphoton microscopy to phenotype immune populations

  • Routine cytometric based approaches to characterizing lymphocyte function

IMIG Collaborations:

  • Hunter, Burkhardt and Hammer: analysis of dendritic cell migration through tissues

  • Hunter and Freedman: calcium flux imaging

Selected Publications

Passos, S. T., Silver, J. S., O’Hara, A., Sehy, D., Stumhofer, J. S., and Hunter, C. A.: IL-6 promotes NK cell production of IL-17 during toxoplasmosis. Journal Immunology 184: 1776-1783, 2010.

Wilson, E. H., T. H. Harris, P. Mrass, B. John, E. D. 5. Tait, G. F. Wu, M. Pepper, E. J. Wherry, F. Dzierzinski, D. Roos, P. G. Haydon, T. M. Laufer, W. Weninger, and C. A. Hunter. : Behavior of parasite-specific effector CD8+ T cells in the brain and visualization of a kinesis-associated system of reticular fibers. Immunity 30: 300-311, 2009.

Oldenhove, G., Bouladoux, N., Wohlfert, E. A., Hall, J. A., Chou, D., Dos Santos, L., O'Brien, S., Blank, R., Lamb, E., Natarajan, S Kastenmayer, R., Hunter, C., Grigg, M. E., Belkaid, Y: Decrease of Foxp3+ Treg cell number and acquisition of effector cell phenotype during lethal infection. Immunity 31: 772-786, 2009.

Jordan, K. A., Wilson, E. H., Tait, E. D., Fox, B. A., Roos, D. S., Bzik, D. J., Dzierszinski, F., and Hunter, C. A. : Kinetics and phenotype of vaccine-induced CD8+ T-cell responses to Toxoplasma gondii. Infect Immun 77: 3894-3901, 2009.

John, B., Harris, T., Tait, E., Wilson, E.H., Ng, L., Mrass, P., Dzierszinski, F., Weninger, W., Hunter, C.A: Dynamic imaging of CD8+ T cells and dendritic cells during infection with Toxoplasma gondii. Plos Pathogens 5(7), 2009.

Anderson, C.F., Stumhofer, J., Hunter, C.A., and Sacks, D. : IL-27 regulates IL-10 and IL-17 from CD4+ cells in non-healing Leishmania major infection. Journal Immunology 183: 4619-4627, 2008.

Kastelein, Robert A. Hunter, Christopher A. Cua, Daniel J.: Discovery and biology of IL-23 and IL-27: related but functionally distinct regulators of inflammation. [Review] [86 refs] Annual Review of Immunology 25: 221-42, 2007.

Stumhofer, J.S., J.S. Silver, A. Laurence, P.M. Porrett, T.H. Harris, L.A. Turka, M. Ernst, C.J. Saris, J.J. O'Shea, and C.A. Hunter.: Interleukins 27 and 6 induce STAT3-mediated T cell production of interleukin 10. Nat Immunol Page: 1363-1371, 11 2007.

Dzierszinski, F., Pepper, M., La Rosa, D., Wilson, E., Bzik, D., Turka, L., Hunter, CA. and Roos, D.: Antigen presentation through MHC class I occurs via the endogenous pathway in non-hematopoietic cells and professional phagocytes infected with Toxoplasma gondii Infection Immunity 75: 5200-9, 2007.

Villarino, Alejandro V. Tato, Cristina M. Stumhofer, Jason S. Yao, Zhengju. Cui, Yongzhi K. Hennighausen, Lothar. O'Shea, John J. Hunter, Christopher A.: Helper T cell IL-2 production is limited by negative feedback and STAT-dependent cytokine signals. Journal of Experimental Medicine 204(1): 65-71, Jan 22 2007.

Masek, Katherine S. Fiore, Jim. Leitges, Michael. Yan, Shi-Fang. Freedman, Bruce D. Hunter, Christopher A.: Host cell Ca2+ and protein kinase C regulate innate recognition of Toxoplasma gondii. Journal of Cell Science 119(Pt 21): 4565-73, Nov 1 2006.

Stumhofer, Jason S. Laurence, Arian. Wilson, Emma H. Huang, Elaine. Tato, Cristina M. Johnson, Leanne M. Villarino, Alejandro V. Huang, Qiulong. Yoshimura, Akihiko. Sehy, David. Saris, Christiaan J M. O'Shea, John J. Hennighausen, Lothar. Ernst, Matthias. Hunter, Christopher A.: Interleukin 27 negatively regulates the development of interleukin 17-producing T helper cells during chronic inflammation of the central nervous system.[see comment]. Nature Immunology 7(9): 937-45, Sep 2006.

Wilson, Emma H. Zaph, Colby. Mohrs, Markus. Welcher, Andy. Siu, Jerry. Artis, David. Hunter, Christopher A.: B7RP-1-ICOS interactions are required for optimal infection-induced expansion of CD4+ Th1 and Th2 responses. Journal of Immunology 177(4): 2365-72, Aug 15 2006.

Hirons, Linda. Gardiner, Eleanor J. Hunter, Christopher A. Willett, Peter.: Structural DNA profiles: single sequence queries. Journal of Chemical Information & Modeling 46(2): 743-52, Mar-Apr 2006.

Villarino, Alejandro V. Stumhofer, Jason S. Saris, Christiaan J M. Kastelein, Robert A. de Sauvage, Frederic J. Hunter, Christopher A.: IL-27 limits IL-2 production during Th1 differentiation. Journal of Immunology 176(1): 237-47, Jan 1 2006.

Shapira, Sagi. Harb, Omar S. Margarit, Juan. Matrajt, Mariana. Han, Jerry. Hoffmann, Alexander. Freedman, Bruce. May, Michael J. Roos, David S. Hunter, Christopher A.: Initiation and termination of NF-kappaB signaling by the intracellular protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii. Journal of Cell Science 118(Pt 15): 3501-8, Aug 1 2005.

Pepper, Marion. Dzierszinski, Florence. Crawford, Amy. Hunter, Christopher A. Roos, David.: Development of a system to study CD4+-T-cell responses to transgenic ovalbumin-expressing Toxoplasma gondii during toxoplasmosis. Infection & Immunity 72(12): 7240-6, Dec 2004.

Villarino, Alejandro. Hibbert, Linda. Lieberman, Linda. Wilson, Emma. Mak, Tak. Yoshida, Hiroki. Kastelein, Robert A. Saris, Christiaan. Hunter, Christopher A.: The IL-27R (WSX-1) is required to suppress T cell hyperactivity during infection.[see comment]. Immunity 19(5): 645-55, Nov 2003.

Tato, C.M., G. Martins, F.A. High, K. DiCoco, S.L. Reiner and C.A. Hunter: Cutting Edge: Early production of IFN- by NK cells is independent of epigenetic modification of the IFN- promoter. Journal Immunology Page: 1514-1518, 2003.

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Last updated: 05/08/2017
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