Drew Weissman

faculty photo
Roberts Family Professor in Vaccine Research
Co-Director, Penn Center for AIDS Research, Immunology Core
Director of Vaccine Research, Infectious Diseases Division
Department: Medicine

Contact information
410B Hill Pavilion
380 S University Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: (215) 573-8491
Graduate Group Affiliations
B.A., M.A. (Biochemistry/Enzymology)
Brandeis University, 1981.
M.D. Ph.D. (Immunology/Microbiology)
Boston University, 1987.
Post-Graduate Training
Residency in Medicine, Beth Israel Hospital, Boston, MA, 1987-1990.
Fellowship, Allergy and Immunology, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, 1990-1993.
Senior Staff Fellow, Laboratory of Immunoregulation, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, 1993-1997.
American Board of Internal Medicine, 1990.
American Board of Allergy and Immunology, 1993.
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Description of Research Expertise

Dr. Weissman's laboratory focuses on the study of RNA and innate immune system biology and the application of these findings to vaccine research and gene therapy. There are three main projects in his laboratory. The first project began through the use of mRNA encoding antigen as a delivery system to load dendritic cells to promote broad immune responses as part of a vaccine. This project has expanded to include basic studies of RNA immunogenicity and translation and the development of applications for gene therapy. The second project develops new HIV envelope immunogens that can induce broad responses and cross-reactive neutralizing antibodies. The third project continues previous studies that identified a protein found on DC, macrophages, and epithelial cells that binds HIV envelope with high affinity. The main focus of this project is testing whether this and related molecules function in vivo to promote HIV genital tract infection.

Selected Publications

Tang J, Zeng C, Cox TM, Li C, Son YM, Cheon IS, Wu Y, Behl S, Taylor JJ, Chakraborty R, Johnson AJ, Schiavo DN, Utz JP, Reisenauer JS, Midthun DE, Mullon JJ, Edell ES, Alameh MG, Borish L, Teague WG, Kaplan MH, Weissman D, Kern R, Hu H, Vassallo R, Liu SL, Sun J.: Respiratory mucosal immunity against SARS-CoV-2 following mRNA vaccination. Sci Immunol Jul 2022.

Xue L, Gong N, Shepherd SJ, Xiong X, Liao X, Han X, Zhao G, Song C, Huang X, Zhang H, Padilla MS, Qin J, Shi Y, Alameh MG, Pochan DJ, Wang K, Long F, Weissman D, Mitchell MJ.: Rational Design of Bisphosphonate Lipid-like Materials for mRNA Delivery to the Bone Microenvironment. J Am Chem Soc 144: 9926-9937, Jun 2022.

Vijayamahantesh V, Patra T, Meyer K, Alameh MG, Reagan EK, Weissman D, Ray R.: Modified E2 Glycoprotein of Hepatitis C Virus Enhances Proinflammatory Cytokines and Protective Immune Response. J Virol 96: e0052322, Jun 2022.

Zhang D, Atochina-Vasserman EN, Lu J, Maurya DS, Xiao Q, Liu M, Adamson J, Ona N, Reagan EK, Ni H, Weissman D, Percec V.: The Unexpected Importance of the Primary Structure of the Hydrophobic Part of One-Component Ionizable Amphiphilic Janus Dendrimers in Targeted mRNA Delivery Activity. J Am Chem Soc 144: 4746-4753, Mar 2022.

Mu Z, Wiehe K, Saunders KO, Henderson R, Cain DW, Parks R, Martik D, Mansouri K, Edwards RJ, Newman A, Lu X, Xia SM, Eaton A, Bonsignori M, Montefiori D, Han Q, Venkatayogi S, Evangelous T, Wang Y, Rountree W, Korber B, Wagh K, Tam Y, Barbosa C, Alam SM, Williams WB, Tian M, Alt FW, Pardi N, Weissman D, Haynes BF.: mRNA-encoded HIV-1 Env trimer ferritin nanoparticles induce monoclonal antibodies that neutralize heterologous HIV-1 isolates in mice. Cell Rep 38: 110514, Mar 2022.

Hook LM, Awasthi S, Cairns TM, Alameh MG, Fowler BT, Egan KP, Sung MMH, Weissman D, Cohen GH, Friedman HM.: Antibodies to Crucial Epitopes on HSV-2 Glycoprotein D as a Guide to Dosing an mRNA Genital Herpes Vaccine. Viruses 14: 540, Mar 2022.

Litvinova LS, Shupletsova VV, Khaziakhmatova OG, Daminova AG, Kudryavtseva VL, Yurova KA, Malashchenko VV, Todosenko NM, Popova V, Litvinov RI, Korotkova EI, Sukhorukov GB, Gow AJ, Weissman D, Atochina-Vasserman EN, Khlusov IA.: Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells as a Carrier for a Cell-Mediated Drug Delivery. Front Bioeng Biotechnol 10: 796111, Feb 2022.

Li D, Martinez DR, Schäfer A, Chen H, Barr M, Sutherland LL, Lee E, Parks R, Mielke D, Edwards W, Newman A, Bock KW, Minai M, Nagata BM, Gagne M, Douek DC, DeMarco CT, Denny TN, Oguin TH, Rountree W, Wang Y, Mansouri K, Edwards RJ, Ferrari G, Sempowski GD, Eaton A, Tang J, Cain DW, Santra S, Pardi N, Weissman D, Tomai MA, Fox CB, Moore IN, Haynes BF: Breadth of SARS-CoV-2 Neutralization and Protection Induced by a Nanoparticle Vaccine. bioRxiv epub: 1, Jan 2022.

Zhang H, Han X, Alameh MG, Shepherd SJ, Padilla MS, Xue L, Butowska K, Weissman D, Mitchell MJ.: Rational design of anti-inflammatory lipid nanoparticles for mRNA delivery. Biomed Mater Res A 10: epub, Jan 2022.

Rurik JG, Tombácz I, Yadegari A, Méndez Fernández PO, Shewale SV, Li L, Kimura T, Soliman OY, Papp TE, Tam YK, Mui BL, Albelda SM, Puré E, June CH, Aghajanian H, Weissman D, Parhiz H, Epstein JA.: CAR T cells produced in vivo to treat cardiac injury. Science 375: 91-96, Jan 2022.

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Last updated: 08/08/2022
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