Multiplex Imaging of the Immune System to Better Understand Tissue Homeostasis, Host Defense, and the Response to Tumors
Brown Bag Lecture by Ronald Germain, Ph.D. | 6/5/2018 11:00AM – 12PM | 7th Floor Conference Room, Bldg 38A
The immune system is not only crucial for protection against infectious agents, but also plays a key role in responses to tumors and in various chronic diseases. Monoclonal antibodies and flow cytometry have had an enormous impact on immune studies, but do not provide information on the distribution of cells within a tissue. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) provides this information, but most IHC methods are of low complexity (2 to 4 parameters), insufficient for identifying the many known immune cell types. We have developed a new IHC approach called Histo-cytometry that involves multiplex immunofluorescent staining of tissue, imaging at high resolution, obtaining quantitative information about staining intensity on a per-cell basis, and locating identified cell subsets in a tissue section. Recent improvements include sequential staining to achieve > 30 parameters, addition of in situ mRNA FISH, and development of a new method (Ce3D) that allows application to 3D volumes. These static imaging methods complement previous and ongoing work using multi-photon dynamic intravital imaging in diverse tissues. To help bring these advances and methods to human studies, NIAID and NCI have partnered to create the Center for Advanced Tissue Imaging (CAT-I), to enable highly multiplex, quantitative image analysis of human tissue samples to advance our understanding of immune processes in various diseases including cancer or to develop better vaccines.
Dr. Ronald Germain, a distinguished NIH investigator, is Chief of the Laboratory of Immune System Biology in the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and director of the CAT-I. He received his Sc.B. and Sc.M. from Brown University and his M.D. and Ph.D. from Harvard Medical School and Harvard University. The Germain laboratory has explored the relationship between immune tissue organization and control of immunity using dynamic and static in situ microscopic methods that his laboratory helped pioneer. He is a member of the NAM and NAS.