September 21: “Understanding Infectious Disease” with Hidde Ploegh

On the evening of September 21, 2011, Whitehead Institute Member Hidde Ploegh, PhD, will discuss his latest breakthroughs in infectious disease research in a presentation entitled, “Understanding Infectious Disease: New Approaches—New Technology.”  The evening will be hosted by BOA members Letty and Tom Gochberg in New York City. Letty chairs the Mid-Atlantic Executive Committee of the BOA.

  • What “Understanding Infectious Disease: New Approaches—New Technology” with Hidde Ploegh
  • WHEN September 21, 2011, 6:30 pm
  • WHERE New York, NY

For more information about attending the event, please contact Sonja Plesset at (617) 258-5103 or splesset@wi.mit.edu.

About Hidde Ploegh, PhD: Hidde Ploegh, PhD is one of the world’s leading researchers in immune system behavior. Dr. Ploegh studies the various tactics that infectious diseases employ to evade our immune responses, and the ways in which our immune system distinguishes friend from foe.

Dr. Ploegh is currently studying how T cells (the white blood cells responsible for finding and destroying infectious disease) respond to cancerous tumors. To support this study, Dr. Ploegh—in collaboration with Whitehead stem cell researcher Rudolf Jaenisch—developed a novel model of the immune system using genetically modified mice. This model allows Dr. Ploegh and his lab to investigate T cell development, activation and interactions on a cellular level. In other work, Dr. Ploegh has developed a method of improving the performance of protein-based therapy drugs. Protein drugs are commonly used to boost white blood cell-count to help immunocompromised patients fight off infection, and Dr. Ploegh’s method may improve the efficacy and stability of these drugs.

Dr. Ploegh has been a member of Whitehead Institute and a Professor of Biology at MIT since 2005. He was previously Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School where he was head of the school’s immunology program.