Karuppiah Muthumani

faculty photo
Research Assistant Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Department: Pathology and Laboratory Medicine

Contact information
Dept of Pathology and Lab. Medicine
505 Stellar-Chance Labs
422 Curie Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: 215-746-8217
Fax: 215-573-9436
B.S. (Biology)
Madurai-Kamaraj University, India, 1985.
M.S. (Biology)
Madurai-Kamaraj University, India, 1989.
Ph.D. (Biology)
Madurai-Kamaraj University, India, 1996.
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Description of Research Expertise

Project I: Directing immune responses against emerging infectious disease agents:

We specialize in the development of novel DNA vaccines and therapeutics against emerging infectious diseases using enhanced DNA technology and electroporation (EP) delivery techniques and comparing their ability to drive immune responses with previously developed immunogens for HIV, Dengue, Chikungunya virus and Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus.

Project II. Creating soluble antibody like molecules as synthetic DNA to treat pathogens & tumor and to explore immunobiology:

A recent focus has been on the generation in vivo of DNA plasmid-encoded neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) in order to generate passive immunity against select pathogens. Using highly optimized DNA construct designs and delivery methods, we are studying the ability of our plasmids to actively drive immune responses or passively provide protection against HIV-1, Dengue virus, Chikungunya virus, and other pathogens of interest.

Project III: Novel gene delivery system to produce anti-tumor and immunomodulatory antibodies in vivo for cancer treatment.

Our lab is exploring the use of second-generation DNA plasmids as an alternative to passive mAb administration for cancer treatment. The second-generation DNA plasmids encode the genes of mAb are injected intramuscularly, where muscle cells take up the plasmids and serve as “antibody factories” by translating, assembling, and secreting the plasmid-encoded mAb into the blood stream. Thus, this second-generation plasmids are designed for in vivo expression has the potential to generate therapeutic levels of mAb in vivo through more cost-effective and simplified treatment regimens.

Selected Publications

Shedlock DJ, Tingey C, Mahadevan L, Hutnick N, Reuschel, EL, Kudchodkar S, Flingai S, Yan Y, Kim JJ, Ugen KE, Weiner DB Muthumani K: Co-Administration of Molecular Adjuvants Expressing NF-Kappa B Subunit p65/RelA or Type-1 Transactivator T-bet Enhance Antigen Specific DNA Vaccine-Induced Immunity. Vaccines 2: 196-215, March 2014.

Fagone P, Muthumani K, Mangano K, Magro G, Meroni PL, Kim JJ, Sardesai NY, Weiner DB, Nicoletti F.: VGX-1027 modulates genes involved in the LPS-induced TLR-4 activation and in a murine model of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Immunology Feb 2014 Notes: DOI: 10.1111/imm.12267.

Muthumani K, Wise MC, Broderick KE, Hutnick N, Goodman J, Flingai S, Yan J, Bian CB, Mendoza J, Tingey C, Wilson C, Wojtak K, Sardesai NY, Weiner DB.: HIV-1 Env DNA vaccine plus protein boost delivered by EP expands B- and T-cell responses and neutralizing phenotype in vivo. PLoS One 8(12): e84234, December 2013.

Flingai S, Czerwonko M, Goodman J, Kudchodkar SB, Muthumani K, Weiner DB: Synthetic DNA Vaccines: Improved Vaccine Potency by Electroporation and Co-Delivered Genetic Adjuvants. Front Immunology 4: 354, November 2013.

Muthumani K, Flingai S, Wise M, Tingey C, Ugen KE, Weiner DB: Optimized and enhanced DNA plasmid vector based in vivo construction of a neutralizing anti-HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein Fab. Hum Vaccin Immunother 9(10), September 2013.

Ouma GO, Rodriguez E, Muthumani K, Weiner DB, Wilensky RL, Mohler ER 3rd. : In vivo electroporation of constitutively expressed HIF-1α plasmid DNA improves neovascularization in a mouse model of limb ischemia. J Vasc Surg 13(00865-3), July 2013.

Chaaithanya IK, Muruganandam N, Anwesh M, Rajesh R, Ghosal SR, Kartick C, Prasad KN, Muthumani K, Vijayachari P: HLA class II allele polymorphism in an outbreak of Chikungunya fever in Middle Andaman, India. Immunology May 2013 Notes: 10.1111/imm.12128.

Bao H, Ramanathan AA, Kawalakar O, Sundaram SG, Tingey C, Bian CB, Muruganandam N, Vijayachari P, Sardesai NY, Weiner DB, Ugen KE, Muthumani K.: Nonstructural Protein 2 (nsP2) of Chikungunya Virus (CHIKV) Enhances Protective Immunity Mediated by a CHIKV Envelope Protein Expressing DNA Vaccine. Viral Immunology 26(1): 75-83, Feb 2013.

Shedlock DJ, Talbott KT, Wu SJ, Wilson CM, Muthumani K, Boyer JD, Sardesai NY, Awasthi S, Weiner DB.: Vaccination with synthetic constructs expressing cytomegalovirus immunogens is highly T cell immunogenic in mice. Hum Vaccin Immunother 1(8(11)), Nov 2012.

Hutnick NA, Myles DJ, Bian CB, Muthumani K, Weiner DB.: Selected approaches for increasing HIV DNA vaccine immunogenicity in vivo. Curr Opin Virol. 1(4)(233-240), October 2011.

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Last updated: 04/14/2014
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