Research and Clinical Interests
The goal of the Bhardwaj lab is to understand the biology of human dendritic cells (DCs) in diseases like cancer and viral infections, and exploit the potential of DCs as therapeutic vaccines. Dendritic cells constitute a specialized class of cells in the body that is involved in the early detection of invading pathogens like bacteria and viruses and directing the body's defense mechanisms to mount an appropriate immune response to check the spread of infection. DCs are able to present on their surface antigenic peptides from pathogens, which are recognized by specific T cells. These T cells get activated and constitute an essential constituent of the ensuing immune response.
Sabado RL, O'Brien M, Subedi A, Qin L, Hu N, Taylor E, Dibben O, Stacey A, Fellay J, Shianna KV, Siegal F, Shodell M, Shah K, Larsson M, Lifson J, Nadas A, Marmor M, Hutt R, Margolis D, Garmon D, Markowitz M, Valentine F, Borrow P, Bhardwaj N. Evidence of dysregulation of dendritic cells in primary HIV infection. Blood. 2010 Nov 11;116(19):3839-52. Epub 2010 Aug 6. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 20693428. doi: 10.1182/blood-2010-03-273763. PMCID: PMC2981539 [Available on 2011/11/11].
Sabado RL, Bhardwaj N. Directing dendritic cell immunotherapy towards successful cancer treatment. Immunotherapy. 2010 Jan;2(1):37-56. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 20473346. doi: 10.2217/imt.09.43. PMCID: PMC2867472.
Bogunovic D, O'Neill DW, Belitskaya-Levy I, Vacic V, Yu YL, Adams S, Darvishian F, Berman R, Shapiro R, Pavlick AC, Lonardi S, Zavadil J, Osman I, Bhardwaj N. Immune profile and mitotic index of metastatic melanoma lesions enhance clinical staging in predicting patient survival. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Nov;Epub 2009 Nov 13. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 19915147. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0905139106.
Minkis K, Kavanagh DG, Alter G, Bogunovic D, O'Neill DW, Adams S, Pavlick A, Walker BD, Brockman MA, Gandhi RT, Bhardwaj N. Type 2 Bias of T Cells Expanded from the Blood of Melanoma Patients Switched to Type 1 by IL-12p70 mRNA–Transfected Dendritic Cells. Cancer Res. 2008 Nov 15;68:9441-50. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-08-0900.
Skoberne M, Yewdall A, Bahjat KS, Godefroy E, Lauer P, Lemmens E, Liu W, Luckett W, Leong M, Dubensky TW, Brockstedt DG, Bhardwaj N. KBMA Listeria monocytogenes is an effective vector for DC-mediated induction of antitumor immunity. J Clin Invest. 2008 Nov;Epub 2008 Nov 6. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 18989377. doi: 10.1172/JCI31350. PMCID: PMC2579623.
Manches O, Munn D, Fallahi A, Lifson J, Chaperot L, Plumas J, Bhardwaj N. HIV-activated human plasmacytoid DCs induce Tregs through an indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase-dependent mechanism. J Clin Invest. 2008 Oct;118(10):3431-9. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 18776940. doi: doi:10.1172/JCI34823.
Adams S, Lowes M, O’Neill DW, Schachterle S, Romero P, Bhardjwaj N. Lack of Functionally Active Melan-A(26-35)-Specific T Cells in the Blood of HLA-A2(+) Vitiligo Patients. J Invest Dermatol. Epub 2008 Mar 13. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 18337837.
O’Neill DW, Bhardwaj N. Armed and ready: How effector T cells deploy in reactive lymph nodes to modulate immunity. Nature Immunol. 2007;8(7):679-81. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 17579644.
Velazquez EF, Jungbluth AA, Yancovitz M, Gnjatic S, Adams S, O'Neill D, Zavilevich K, Albukh T, Christos P, Mazumdar M, Pavlick A, Polsky D, Shapiro R, Berman R, Spira J, Busam K, Osman I, Bhardwaj N. Expression of the cancer/testis antigen NY-ESO-1 in primary and metastatic malignant melanoma (MM)--correlation with prognostic factors. Cancer Immun. 2007;7:11-17. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 17625806.
Skoberne M, Somersan S, Almodovar W, Truong T, Petrova K, Henson P, Bhardwaj N. The Apoptotic Cell Receptor CR3, but not alphavbeta5, is a regulator of human dendritic-cell immunostimulatory function. Blood. 2006 Aug 1;108(3):947-55.
Beignon AS, McKenna K, Skoberne M, Manches O, DaSilva I, Kavanagh D, Larsson M, Gorelick R, Liffson J, Bhardwaj N. Endocytosis of HIV-1 Activates Plasmacytoid Dendritic Cells via Toll-Like Receptor-Viral RNA Interactions. J Clin Invest. 2005;115:3265-75.
Altfeld M, Fadda L, Frleta D, Bhardwaj N. DCs and NK cells: critical effectors in the immune response to HIV-1. Nat Rev Immunol. 2011 Mar;11(3):176-86. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 21350578. doi: 10.1038/nri2935.
Khan S, Greenberg JD, Bhardwaj N. Dendritic cells as targets for therapy in rheumatoid arthritis. Nat Rev Rheumatol. 2009 Oct;5(10):566-71. Cited in Pubmed; PMID 19798032. doi: 10.1038/nrrheum.2009.185.
American Society of Clinical Investigation; American Society of Clinical Oncology; Infectious Disease Society of America; American Association of Immunologists
2002-2007 Doris Duke Distinguished Clinical Scientist Award
2004 Merit Award, NIH AI44628
2004 Scientific American Top 50 Researchers Award (Medical Research)
2009 Elected Member, Association of American Physicians
2009-2011 NIH MERIT Award (3R37AI044628-11S1): Induction of lmmunity by Non-Replicating HIV-1 (PI)
2009-2011 NIH/NIAID Award (1RC1 AI087097): Immunosuppressive pathways in acute-HIV infection (PI)