Dr. Julie Magarian Blander, an expert on the innate immune system, has been recruited to the WDOM as of November 1, 2016. Dr. Blander is an Assistant Professor of Immunology in Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology & Hepatology and will be carrying out critical new research at the Jill Roberts Institute for Research in Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Dr. Blander is the recipient of significant funding from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Burroughs Wellcome Trust Fund, and Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Scholar Award.
Before joining Weill Cornell, Dr. Blander served as the Director of the Graduate Multidisciplinary Training Area in Immunology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. While at Mount Sinai, her group built a robust Innate Immunity Research Program that was centered around the innate immune functions of macrophages and dendritic cells in various settings of infection, cell death, autoimmunity and cancer. They showed that the innate immune system has the capacity to detect microbial viability, a finding that has helped to illuminate the complexity with which the innate immune system can sense the level of microbial threat and, thus, tailor an appropriate immune response. The Blander group also demonstrated how bacterial messenger RNA is the first example of a vita-PAMP, setting the stage for the discovery of more vita- PAMPs in the future. Dr. Blander’s research has led to several high-impact publications, not only in the areas of antigen presentation and innate immune host defense, but for tumor immunotherapy, cell death, and T helper cell differentiation as well. The breadth of these discoveries has impacted the field for both innate and adaptive immunity.
Dr. Blander received her Ph.D. in Immunology from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Department of Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry, and completed postdoctoral training at Yale University School of Medicine, Department of Immunobiology. She is in the Faculty of 1000; Top 10 in Biology and Top 10 in Immunology, Nature. In addition to her contributions as a researcher, Dr. Blander is known for her successful mentorship of many post-doctoral fellows, Ph.D.s, and medical students.