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My laboratory has two decades of experience in investigating the immunological mechanisms of vaccine and adjuvants against infectious diseases with an emphasis on tuberculosis. Tuberculosis kills more infants and adults (~ 1.5 million) than any infectious agent each year. We use genetic, and immunological engineering to develop new generation bacterial, subunit, replication deficient viral and mRNA vaccines for protection against TB. We use mouse, humanized mouse and macaque models to test and validate our vaccines and use cutting edge techniques like RNAseq, single cell RNAseq, single cell proteomics (MILO), single cell metabolomics (Isoplexis) followed by functional assays to understand mouse and human immune system. Strengthening of the infant immune system is major focus of our research. A rotation in my lab provides training in using cell culture and animal model-based methods to test the Systems Immunobiology of mouse and human-immune system.

Calculated based on number of publications stored in Pure and citations from Scopus
1981 …2024

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Personal profile

Dr. Jagannath is a medical microbiologist with an MSC degree and received his PhD degree from Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, University of Madras, Pondicherry, India in 1984. He was an assistant director of infectious disease under the Ministry health, Govt of India and relocated to USA in 1990. As an instructor at the University of Illinois, Chicago, between 1991-92, he published several papers on drugs for treating multi-drug resistant tuberculosis. In 1992, he relocated to CytRX corporation Atlanta continuing TB drug research and was an adjunct Associate Professor the Emory School of Medicine. In 1996, he joined the Dept. of Pathology and laboratory medicine UTHSC Houston as an Associate Professor retired as a tenured Professor in 2018. During 20 years of research at UTHSC, he pioneered the new generation autophagy-inducing vaccines for TB and his recombinant BCG85B vaccine RESEARCH published in Nature Medicine in 2009 was profiled on NIAID website. His lab published more than 80 publications (Hi index 39; i10-index 77; >12,000 citations; Google scholar) reporting novel findings in tuberculous pathogenesis and vaccine development using mouse models. During his tenure at UTHSC-Houston, he was a teaching member for the Program in Immunology at the Graduate School Biomedical Sciences and mentored seven MS/PhD students for their degree.

Professor Jagannath is now a member of the Houston Academic Institute and a faculty at Weill Cornell Medicine. Since Jan 2019, he has established a Tuberculosis vaccine and adjuvant research laboratory at the Dept. of Pathology and Genomic medicine, HMRI, Houston. He continues his vaccine research using mice, humanized mice, and nonhuman primate models for research. His current research is on understanding and strengthening of human immune responses to infections through a Systems Biology approach using human and NHP derived immune cells and models. His lab has received near continuous NIH RO1 grant funding since 2001. He continues to serve NIH study sections and was a past empaneled member of the CSR VMD study section.

Potential for graduate student research: Ongoing research thrust includes a Systems Biology approach for macrophage and dendritic cell activation for immunotherapy of human infections; augmenting tuberculosis vaccine responses; antibody mediated immunotherapy for tuberculosis, and vaccination strategies for infants.  We are currently developing new generation, intradermal and mucosal vaccines for boosting BCG vaccines against tuberculosis using mouse and NHP models.

Personal profile

We have recently developed a self - adjuvanted mRNA based tuberculosis vaccine, which has been validated for efficacy using mice.  Induction of trained and adaptive immunity using new generation mRNA vaccines is our new focus of research.  We have also developed a BCG -based candidate vaccine with a potential to treat bladder cancer.

External positions

Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine , Weill Cornell Medical College

Mar 1 2021 → …

Research Area Keywords

  • Infectious Disease & Pathology

Free-text keywords

  • Tuberculosis
  • Vaccines
  • Human immunology
  • Macrophage Biology
  • Adjuvants
  • Mouse models
  • Innate immunity
  • mRNA vaccines
  • BCG based cancer vaccines


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