Human Immune System Mouse Core

Despite great effort, an ideal animal model in which to study HIV pathogenesis and test vaccine efficacy remains elusive.

Recently, we and others have developed a markedly improved humanized mouse model of HIV by transplanting human CD34+ stem cells and autologous human thymic grafts into immunodeficient mice (see the article Brainard DM et al. Induction of robust cellular and humoral virus-specific adaptive immune responses in human immunodeficiency virus-infected humanized BLT mice).

In this model, we have achieved robust repopulation of mouse lymphoid tissues with human immune cells, and have generated robust anti-HIV cellular and humoral immune responses in these humanized mice. We believe this improved humanized mouse model will allow us to study questions regarding the biology of HIV-1 not readily approachable through human studies.

The Human Immune System Mouse Core was established in order to further develop this model of the human immune system, and to make it available to the MGH research community and beyond. A large number of investigators have or are currently using this core. This includes investigators at Partners institutions, at non-Partners institutions in Boston, and institutions outside of Boston both in the USA and Europe.

For questions related to the Human Immune System Mouse Core, please contact: 

Co-Director: Vladimir Vrbanac, D.V.M.

Co-Director: Maud Deruaz, Ph.D.