About the Webinar

Systemic lupus erythematosus is a deadly and incurable disease in which T follicular helper (Tfh) cells play a key role in pathogenesis of autoantibody production and progression of organ damage. Tfh cells also play a key role in a number of other incurable human diseases. Unfortunately, no clinical interventions currently exist for selective depletion of Tfh cells to alleviate these diseases. In this webinar, Dr. Stephen Waggoner at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center will discuss an engineered chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) facilitating specific targeting of cells with high expression levels of human programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1), a cardinal feature of Tfh cells. This CAR could potentially advance as a clinical tool for selective depletion of pathogenic follicular T cells or other PD-1 high-target cells in certain disease states.

About the Presenter


Stephen Waggoner, Ph.D., is an associate professor in the Center for Autoimmune Genomics and Etiology (CAGE) at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center within the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine Department of Pediatrics. Dr. Waggoner received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia, conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, and joined the faculty at Cincinnati Children’s in 2013. He has garnered international recognition for his discovery that natural killer (NK) cells play a crucial regulatory role during persistent virus infection involving suppression of virus-specific T cell responses. His lab continues to explore the relevance of this phenomenon in chronic infections, vaccine efficacy, autoimmune disease, and age-associated immune dysfunction. Dr. Waggoner co-invented this technology with Seth Reighard, an MSTP trainee at the University of Cincinnati who performed these studies during his immunology Ph.D. studies, and Hermine Brunner, MD, Director of the Division of Rheumatology at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and a clinical and translational scientist focused on childhood rheumatic diseases.

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