Universtiy of Miami Miller School of Medicine Graduate Studies

Microbiology and Immunology

Microbiology and Immunology is particularly productive in pre-clinical research and discovery. We are focused on pathogenic bacteria, viruses, and immunology. Our main research themes also focus on developing more effective cancer immunotherapy, an HIV vaccine, creating antigen-specific immune tolerance and overcoming the antibiotic resistance of bacteria.

Active research in immunology includes the areas of cytotoxicity, programmed cell death, cytokine receptor signaling, clinical and experimental bone marrow transplantation, stem cell biology, gene therapy for cancer treatment, antigen recognition, cell differentiation and communication, aging of the immune system, interleukins, genetic control of immunoglobulin production, gene activation and evolution of the immune response. Research in other areas includes molecular biology of virus-host interaction in both animal and human systems, control and regulation of bacterial pathogenesis, selective tumor chemotherapy and radiation therapy and therapy of parasitic infections.

We actively collaborate with the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Diabetes Research Institute. These interactions help to foster translating our discoveries in the laboratory to directly benefitting patients with cancer and type 1 diabetes. Our efforts to translate our discoveries to the clinic are also shown in our large portfolio of licensing agreements and start-up companies.

Key Areas of Research

  • Antibiotic Resistance of Bacteria
  • Antigen-specific Immune Tolerance
  • Cancer Immunotherapy
  • Cellular & Molecular Immunology
  • HIV / AIDS
  • Microbial Genetics
  • Pathogenic Bacteriology
  • Virology

Miami, unfortunately, has a high rate of disease-afflicted individuals, but this gives us the opportunity to study the root causes of these diseases up-close and develop new therapies for the people that most need them. Miami is the right fit for me because of the interdisciplinary culture at many levels: collaborations between labs, other disciplines, and clinicians.

Richard Hunte, PhD
Alumnus, Microbiology & Immunology