Research Lab of Elizabeth Bonney, M.D., M.P.H.

Overview:

Area of interest: regulation of the immune response in pregnancy.

Our laboratory uses studies in mouse models and, in an iterative fashion, in humans to determine the rules underlying the regulation of maternal immunity. We have extensive experience in examining the homeostasis of T cells in the mouse maternal immune system, and this includes up-to-date methods to isolate and phenotype T cells from maternal tissues. Recently, we have extended our studies of T cell homeostasis to the postpartum period. Further, with the laboratory of Dr. Natalia Gokina, we are examing the role of the maternal immune system in systemic vascular remodeling both early and late postpartum. In an additional project, we use viral infection and exposure to bacterial coat proteins to understand innate-adaptive immune system cross-regulation during pregnancy. Our laboratory has moreover extended its focus to include neonatal immunity. One important clinical problem we seek to address is that of preterm labor. We continue to be interested in delineating the inflammatory processes that underlie both normal parturition and preterm birth. We are grateful for productive global collaborations, for multiple sources of funding, and for the friends, students, and trainees who contribute to our work.

 

Lab Members:

Kirtika Prakash, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow
Warrick Sahene, MS, Technician
Mina Peshavaria, PhD, Volunteer Research Associate Professor
Nanbert Zhong, PhD, MD, Adjunct Associate Professor

 

 

Recent students/trainees:

Rieck, Rebecca: Maternal-fetal medicine Fellowship Research Advisor (with Benjamin Suratt). “The effects of pregnancy on the pulmonary response to lipopolysaccharide-induced acute lung injury” 2018-2019, Faculty at the University of Virginia

Montgomery, Theresa: Rotation supervisor PhD program in cell and molecular biological sciences, University of Vermont.  “A mouse model of congenital ZIKA virus infection” Sept-Dec 2017, PhD in progress

Rodriguez, Princess Dee: Rotation supervisor PhD program in cell and molecular biological sciences, University of Vermont. “Regulation of erythroid precursors in neonatal spleen” October 2015-February 2016, PhD in progress

Haswell, Abigail: Rotation supervisor PhD program in cell and molecular biological sciences, University of Vermont. “Regulation of erythroid precursors in neonatal spleen” August 2015

Ekor, Kome: Undergraduate Research Experience (supervisor).  “Maternal T cell metabolism” Sept 2018-Graduated 2019: Laboratory technician.

Green, Malia Nicole; Undergraduate Research Experience (supervisor). “Role of pregnancy in modulating cardiovascular risk of a high fat diet” June 2018-June 2019 Matriculated 2019: Clinical Scribe.

Scott, Sara; Undergraduate Research Experience, Honors College (supervisor).” Role of pregnancy in modulating cardiovascular risk of a high fat diet” 2016-2017Matriculated: University of Missouri School of Veterinary Medicine.


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  • Elizabeth Bonney, MD, MPH, Professor and Head of the Division of Reproductive Sciences was selected to present the lecture entitled "A Theory of Maternal Immunity" at the 25th Annual Dr. Raymond O. Berry Memorial Lecture on October 18, 2019. Read the announcement here..