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Zamora Lab Research

Research in the Zamora lab spans the fields of viral and cancer immunology, with a special focus on identifying ways to modulate the immune system to more effectively target and eliminate virally infected or cancerous cells. Along these lines, the lab utilizes cellular-based engineering approaches that aim to increase the specificity of immune cells for their targets and at the same time decrease the likelihood of off-target toxicities. A longstanding goal in the lab has also been to help address the current disparities in cancer research by developing reagents, assays, and tools that provide a deeper understanding of the underlying mechanisms that govern antitumor immunity across diverse demographic groups.

Current research in the Zamora lab focuses on: (1) discovering tumor antigens that serve as immunogenic targets, (2) identifying the mechanisms involved in the immune system’s ability to generate antitumor specificities, (3) characterizing the phenotypic, functional, and receptor repertoires of NK cells and neoantigen-specific T cells, and (4) exploring ways to translate these findings in order to expand on the current therapeutic options used to treat cancer.

About the PI

Anthony Zamora, PhDAnthony Zamora, PhD, Assistant Professor, obtained his PhD in Immunology from the University of California, Davis in 2015. During his doctoral training under the guidance of Dr. William J. Murphy, he performed studies on the immunoregulatory roles of NK cell subsets on T cells during viral infection, cancer, and following allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Additionally, he studied the impact of age and obesity on systemic cancer immunotherapy regimens in various cancers. Across these studies, he aimed to address how important biological parameters (e.g., obesity and age) affected therapeutic interventions and disease outcome. After completing his doctoral degree, he completed a four-year postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Immunology under the guidance of Dr. Paul G. Thomas at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. His research focused on assessing the determinants of antitumor immunity by identifying the immunogenic targets expressed by cancerous cells that could effectively be targeted by the immune system.

His research also aimed to help address the current disparities in cancer research by developing reagents and assays that provide a deeper understanding of the underlying mechanisms that govern antitumor immunity and influence the disparate clinical responses to immunotherapy observed across diverse demographic groups.

In 2019, Dr. Zamora joined the Division of Hematology and Oncology, Department of Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin. He also holds a secondary appointment in the Department of Microbiology & Immunology and is a member of the Cancer Center and the Center for Immunology.

Lab Members

Tanya Kozlik, BS

Education: University of Wisconsin-Madison, BS Zoology; University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, MS Biomedical Sciences (defense scheduled 5/2021)

Ravi K. Shah, PhD

Education: Sardar Patel University, PhD Biotechnology

Erin E. Cygan, BA

Education: Augustana College, BA Biology and Biochemistry

Alfredo Colina, BA

Education: Grinnell College BA Biology