Victor Engelhard

Engelhard, Victor H.

Primary Appointment

Professor, Microbiology, Immunology, and Cancer Biology


  • BA, Biochemistry, Rice University, Houston, TX
  • MS, Biochemistry, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL
  • PhD, Biochemistry, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL
  • Postdoc, Immunology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

Contact Information

Carter Immunology Center
Box 801386 / Carter-Harrison Bldg rm 3525
Charlottesville, Virginia 22908
Telephone: 434-924-2423
Fax: 434-924-1221

Research Disciplines

Biotechnology, Cancer Biology, Cardiovascular Biology, Immunology, Translational Science

Research Interests

Identification of MHC-restricted tumor antigens / Control of T cell homing to tumors / Tertiary lymphoid structures and intratumoral immunity

Research Description

The work of my laboratory over the last 40 years has been broadly concerned with the recognition of antigens by CD8 T cells. In the last 20 years, that work has increasingly focused on tumor-derived antigens and cancer immunology. Current activities in the laboratory are focused on the role of different homing receptors in enabling T cell infiltration into tumors, control of expression of homing receptor ligands on tumor associated vasculature, and the factors driving development of tertiary lymphoid structures in tumors. We have identified the homing receptors that are upregulated on effector CD8 T cells in different lymph nodes, and have established their role in infiltration of effector cells into inflamed and resting peripheral tissues, non-contiguous lymph nodes, and tumors. We have evaluated expression of homing receptor ligands on endothelial cells in melanoma tumors and have established that they are often suboptimal. We are currently studying their regulation by aspects of the tumor microenvironment, including pro-inflammatory cytokines and angiogenic growth factors. We have also uncovered mechanisms that regulate the development of tumor vasculature that resembles that of lymph node high endothelial venules. We have established that this vasculature enables naïve T cells to infiltrate tumors, and in some cases, to form tumor-associated tertiary lymphoid structures. Following this, we have established that development of these structures involves cross-talk between B lymphocytes and tumor associated fibroblasts. Altogether, these activities reflect an ongoing commitment to understand the limits on, and improve the entry of, T cells into tumors. My activities have led to 200 peer-reviewed and invited publications. I have been recognized as an ISI Highly Cited Researcher©, placing me among the top 250 of scientists and scholars worldwide cited in 21 broad subject categories in sciences and medicine.

Selected Publications