We link multiple biomedical disciplines for research, training, and program development in the field of innate immunity.

The Stetson laboratory is investigating how cells detect and respond to virus infection. Cells sense virus infection using molecular sensors that alert the cell to the invading viral nucleic acids. This research focus not only sheds light on how the body responds to virus infection, but also lends understanding to the underlying causes of autoimmunity, as the innate immune system’s cellular sensors have to accurately differentiate between the foreign virus nucleic acid and the normal cellular nucleic acid. Dr. Stetson is an Associate Professor of Immunology at the University of Washington and Co-Director of the Signaling and Human Cell Transgenic Core of the CIIID. Recent groundbreaking work by the Stetson lab has revealed that certain cancer-causing DNA viruses encode proteins that prevent the intracellular STING signalling pathway of cell-intrinsic innate immunity to function. This process allows the invading virus to evade restriction otherwise imposed by the innate immune response of the infected cell while also dysregulating cell division and to promote cancer.

Mission

The CIIID is focused on fostering basic science and clinical research, translational research and development, and training activities of the UW and Seattle research community in the disciplines of innate immunity and immune disease.