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Immunology Core

Director: Riley, James L., PhD


The mission of the Immunology Core is to further innovative, interdisciplinary and translational research that enhances our understanding of the pathogenesis and immunopathogenesis of HIV/AIDS; provides new approaches toward understanding cellular, humoral and innate responses to HIV; and develops novel HIV therapy and vaccine strategies. To achieve these goals, the Core provides state-of-the-art immunological services and reagents; specialized technology; leadership, expertise and advice; and collaborative support in the area of immunological research to the Penn CFAR community. The Core also works closely with the Perelman School of Medicine Human Immunology Core (HIC).





  • Cellular, Humoral, and Molecular Immunology Assays (HIC, 410 & 704 Stellar Chance) ( Support service )

    -- Specimen Processing, Banking, & Sample Shipment
    -- Luminex assays
    -- Flow Cytometry
    -- ELISPOT
    -- ELISA
    -- Digital ELISA (Simoa)
    Ultra-sensitivity- 1,000-fold improvement over today’s state-of-the-art immunoassays
    Measure proteins in single cells
    Precision- Exceptional repeatability at ultra-low concentrations of target proteins
    Full Automation- Enhanced data reproducibility
    Wide Dynamic Range- Proprietary combination of both digital and analog signal measurements provide > 4 logs of dynamic range.
    Multiplexing Capability- Currently up to 4 different analytes can be tested from a single sample, future capabilities of 10 plus analytes
    Measure neurology markers in serum/plasma/exosomes, not just CSF
    Custom assay development offerings (develop your own specific assay)
    Measure markers in a wide variety of sample matrices (Serum, Plasma, CSF)
    PCR levels of sensitivity of detection of proteins (such as p24)
    Detect “normal” endogenous levels of proteins, unmeasurable with conventional technologies
    Over 60 off the shelf kits available today or develop your own homebrew assays with ease
    -- Sequencing of Human & Murine IgH rearrangement
    -- Sequencing of Human TCR Vβ rearrangements
    -- Amplification and cloning of Ig rearrangements
    -- Data analysis pipeline for repertoire studies
    -- Customized Data Analysis
    -- Scientific Consultation and Assay Development

  • Primary Cell Purification ( Support service )

    -- Freshly isolated primary PBMCs, CD4, CD8, T cells, NK, monocytes and B cells
    -- CCR5 deficient T cells and monocytes from Δ32 donors

  • Small Animal Model of HIV-1 Infection ( Support service )

    The Penn CFAR Immunology Core is partnered with the Xenograft and Stem Cell Core to provide "ready-to-use" NSG and BLT mice, experimental planning and design, IACUC protocols, and in vivo experimental techniques.

    Robust human T cell engraftment was developed in 2005 using mice engineered to have common gamma chain deficiency, the Nod, SCID, common gamma chain deficient (NSG) mouse. This model has been used to study approaches like ZFN targeting coreceptors and anti-sense RNA to protect fully mature CD4 T cells from HIV-1 infection in vivo. As an important priority for the coming cycle, the Penn CFAR Immunology Core has been working with Xenograft and Stem Cell Core to establish the next generation humanized mouse model, the Bone marrow-Liver-thymus (BLT) humanized mouse.

    With support from the CFAR, the Xenograft Core monitors engraftment to determine when the mice are ready to use, at which point the mice are transferred to the investigator's protocol. In addition to producing "ready-to-use" BLT and NSG mice, the Core can further support users by performing a wide variety of in vivo techniques including injections of live HIV virus, human T-cells, peripheral blood sampling and tissue collection. The Core Director is also able to assist CFAR investigators with experimental planning, experimental design, and IACUC protocols.

  • Standard Immunological Assays ( Support service )

    -- Cell Based Assays
    -- Flow Based Assays and Services

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Last updated: 2019-10-28T14:17:45.542-04:00

Copyright © 2016 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College
The eagle-i Consortium is supported by NIH Grant #5U24RR029825-02 / Copyright 2016