Category Archives: research

Ndhlovu Named HHMI International Research Scholar

Ragon Institute Instructor, Zaza M. Ndhlovu, PhD, is one of forty-one scientists from 16 countries who have been chosen as International Research Scholars through the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI).   HHMI, along with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Wellcome Trust, and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation developed this award in order to recognize […]

Read more
Bacterial communities of female genital tract impact HIV infection risk

More diverse vaginal microbiomes in South African women may underlie increased risk   CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – A team of researchers from the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard has found that the most common bacterial community in the genital tract of healthy South African women is associated with […]

Read more
CRISPR Screening Identifies Potential HIV Treatment Targets

Targeting human genes required for viral reproduction but not for T cell survival would avoid inducing treatment resistance   BOSTON – Investigators from the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard have used the revolutionary new gene-editing technology CRISPR-Cas9 to identify three promising new targets for treatment […]

Read more
Antibody Function May Help Keep TB Under Control

A study led by investigators from the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard finds evidence that antibody protection may help control infection with the bacteria that causes tuberculosis (TB).  In their study receiving online publication in Cell, the research team describes finding consistent differences in both the structure and function of antibodies targeting the […]

Read more
From Donation to Research: The Journey of a CD4+ T Cell

The Ragon Institute of Mass General Hospital, MIT, and Harvard has a dual mission to contribute to the accelerated discovery of an HIV/AIDS vaccine and subsequently to establish itself as a world leader in the collaborative study of immunology. Thus, the vast majority of studies require the use of peripheral blood cells such as B […]

Read more
New Research Shows Vaccine Protection Against Zika Virus

BOSTON – The rapid development of a safe and effective vaccine to prevent the Zika virus (ZIKV) is a global priority, as infection in pregnant women has been shown to lead to fetal microcephaly and other major birth defects. The World Health Organization declared the Zika virus epidemic a global public health emergency on February […]

Read more
HIV Genetics Reveal Key Transmission Differences

Understanding why some strains of HIV may be more infectious than others may provide critical clues to developing an HIV vaccine that effectively blocks HIV transmission.   A study in the journal PLoS Pathogens, led by researchers at the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard have decoded new information about the genetic makeup of […]

Read more
Flow Cytometers and Flux Capacitors

Debunking the perplexingly advanced, cutting-edge technologies used by researchers at the Ragon Institute Imaging Core in pursuit of an HIV/AIDS vaccine.   There is perhaps no better analogy for the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT, and Harvard’s Imaging Core than a tricked-out, time-traveling 1985 DeLorean sports car.   Yes, you read that correctly.   Much like Marty […]

Read more
Study Identifies Unexpected Unexpected Mutation In Commonly Used Research Mice

Previously undetected mutation in a subline of C57BL/6 mice could compromise results of many previous studies   BOSTON – A strain of inbred mice commonly used for the creation of so-called knockout animals has been found to carry a previously undetected mutation that could affect the results of immune system research studies. In paper receiving […]

Read more
Study of Potent HIV Antibodies Yields HIV Vaccine Insight

A sub-Saharan African donor’s blood has yielded remarkable finds that could be crucial in the search for an AIDS vaccine. An infected donor’s immune system naturally made potent antibodies, which lab tests showed could effectively recognize and neutralize about 50 percent of all HIV-1 strains circulating around the world. HIV-1 is the most widespread HIV […]

Read more