Weiguo Cui, PhD
I am an immunologist with broad expertise in studying T cell response during viral, bacterial infection and tumorigenesis. My research interest has mainly focused on how cytokine signals and genetic pathways influence effector and memory T cell differentiation as well as T cell exhaustion. I have discovered multiple signaling pathways and transcriptional circuits that regulate both terminally differentiated/senescent effector T cell and long-lived memory T cell fate decisions. My exciting new work has uncovered a novel pathway, connecting CD4-derived IL-21 to STAT3-BATF regulated transcriptional machinery in CD8 T cells, which vigorously sustains the effector function in CD8 T cells, which can be harnessed to fight cancer. In addition, we have recently employed single-cell transcriptomics studies and discovered new immune cells in the context of chronic viral infection and tumorigenesis. The overarching goal of my research is to find new ways to reverse T cell exhaustion and improve control over chronic viral infection and cancer.