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Edward Clark, PhD, Emeritus Associate Director and Advisor


Edward A. Clark, Ph.D. is a retired Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Adjunct Professor of Medicine (Rheumatology) and Co-Director of the CIIID at the University of Washington, Seattle. Dr. Clark received his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of California, Los Angeles and carried out postdoctoral research at University College London before joining the University of Washington faculty in 1979.

Dr. Clark's major research goals have included defining and characterizing receptors expressed on human B lymphocytes and dendritic cells (DCs). His lab used monoclonal antibody (mAb) technology to discover and characterize receptors such as CD20, CD22, CD80 (B7/BB1), CD40 and CD180 (RP105). He helped to define the molecular basis of how T cells help B cells through the CD40 receptor as well as the molecular basis of T cell co-stimulation by showing that CD80 is a ligand for CD28 on T cells. During the course of this work, Dr. Clark co-found the first immunology-based biotechnology companies in Seattle, Genetic Systems, which was eventually bought by Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS). His studies help pave the way toward the development of important and effective immunotherapeutic drugs that target CD20 such as Rituximab (Genentech) or interfere with T cell co-stimulation such as Abatacept (BMS). Dr. Clark also helped to co-found Trubion Pharmaceuticals (2001) to develop immunotherapeutics to treat cancer patients and patients with autoimmune diseases.

Dr. Clark’s lab has focused on innate signaling pathways and on investigating the programming of B cells and DC subsets by pathogens and novel methods for targeting antigens into the immune system to program humoral immune responses. Based on his findings of how humoral immunity is programmed, his group has begun to develop and assess novel immunotherapeutics for inducing protective immunity through targeting viral antigens (Ags) to the CD180 receptor. In proof-of-concept studies he has shown that a West Nile virus (WNV) E protein coupled to anti-CD180 can induce protective immunity even in immunodeficient mice. Based on this finding he is currently developing novel immunotherapeutic platforms that can be effective in immunodeficient or immunocompromised individuals. He and his colleagues have recently launched a new start-up company, Shilshole Bioscience. Dr. Clark’s third biotech company will use the CD180 platform technology to develop immunotherapeutics for treatment of chronic hepatitis B patients and other viral diseases.

Dr. Clark has received the following awards in recognition of his accomplishments: a Japanese Ministry of Education (Mombusho), Foreign Research Scholarship in 1987, an NIH/NIAID MERIT Award 2004-2014, and a University of Washington Presidential Entrepreneurial Faculty Fellowship 2014-2016. Dr. Clark has also been recognized as one of the most highly cited immunologists in the world by Science Watch (1990-1994, No. 15, and Science Watch Most Highly Cited Authors in Immunology, 1981-2001).