An immediate position supported by NIH R01 grants is available.
The main focus of the laboratory is to investigate novel immunological aspects of stem cells and their niche.
We are testing whether the niche acts as an immunological sanctuary for stem cells, termed an immune privileged site, which
1) protects stem cells from stress and inflammation,
2) promotes engraftment of transplanted allogeneic stem cells,
3) shields malignant stem cells from immune attack and therapeutic insults, including tumor immunotherapy.
Immune privilege was originally demonstrated in the 1950s to exist within the testis and placenta—organs accommodating embryonic and germline stem cells.
Although more recent stem cell research has identified various tissue-committed stem cells and their microenvironments, or niches, little is known about whether niches are immune privileged.
We have recently demonstrated that the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) niche within the bone marrow accommodates a unique regulatory T cell population which renders the niche immune privileged (Cell Stem Cell 22, 445-453, 2018; Nature 474(7350), 216-9, 2011).
Our group has demonstrated that these niche-residential Tregs and their product, extracellular adenosine, play critical roles in BM transplantation, injury and malignancies.
Our work has further identified these niche-residential Tregs as a promising source of cell therapy for transplantation and tissue injury.
Current research focuses include (but are not limited to) studies to further uncover fundamental mechanisms of immune privilege and to translate our knowledge into the clinical settings of cancer, transplantation, tissue injury and infection.
Multiple experimental approaches, including transgenic animal models, sequencing, and intravital two-photon microscopy, will be used.
Successful candidates will have a Ph.D. or a visiting scholar and/or M.D. degree, and a strong background in stem cell biology or immunology.
To apply for this position, please send your CV with names/contact info of 3 references to Dr. Joji Fujisaki (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Dr. Fujisaki’s laboratory is affiliated with Columbia Stem Cell Initiative (https://www.columbiastemcell.org) and Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center (http://cancer.columbia.edu).
The laboratory is located within Columbia Center for Translational Immunology (http://www.cumc.columbia.edu/ccti/) which is a multi-departmental, multidisciplinary research center aimed at optimizing translation of advances in basic immunology from the laboratory to the clinic, understanding immunological diseases and events in humans and optimizing transfer of information and methodologies to achieve synergy between different disciplines of applied immunology.
Joji Fujisaki, MD PhD
Columbia Center for Translational Immunology
Columbia Stem Cell Initiative
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons