Braciale, Thomas J.

Thomas J. Braciale

Thomas J. Braciale

Primary Appointment

Professor, Pathology


  • BS, Biology, St. Joseph's College, Philadelphia, PA
  • MD, Medicine and Immunology, Univ. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • PhD, Medicine and Immunology, Univ. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Residency, Pathology, Barnes Hospital (Washington Univ.) St. Louis, MO
  • Postdoc, Immunology and Virology, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia

Contact Information

RSV can induce immune-mediated disease
Charlottesville, VA 22908
Telephone: 924-9233
Website: PO Box 801386

Research Interests

T Lymphocyte Responses To Virus Infection

Research Description

My laboratory is interested in the host immune response to virus infection - specifically, we study the role of the adaptive immune response in the clearance of both virus and virus-infected cells from the body, and the contribution of the immune response in producing injury during virus infection. Much of our work focuses on infection of the respiratory tract (the lungs) by two viruses: Influenza virus and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).

Our research on Influenza focuses on the response of CD8+ T lymphocytes -- Cytolytic T Lymphocytes (CTL) or killer T cells -- to Influenza infection. We want to understand three main things: 1) how CTL are generated during infection; 2) how CD8+ T cells interact with the principal antigen presenting cells of the body (i.e. dendritic cells) to produce those CTL; and 3) how the interplay between Influenza virus and the CTL response contributes to lung injury during infection. We use modern techniques of cell and molecular biology -- including T cell receptor transgenic murine models and virus reverse genetics (to alter the structure of the Influenza genome) in order to understand how specific virus genes (and their products), as well as CTL products (e.g. cytokines) operate to clear infection and/or produce disease. Recently, we have extended this work to include avian influenza virus (Bird Flu") infection in order to define the mechanisms of lethal infection produced by this virus.

The second virus that we study