Research Programs at RBL

The Duke RBL supports sponsored research programs in the areas of:

Duke DARPA Pandemic Prevention Platform Program (P3)

Duke PI: C. Duckett (DoD-DARPA HR0011-17-2-0069)

The Duke DARPA Pandemic Prevention Platform (P3) team seeks to apply its experience, innovations, cutting-edge research portfolio, and in-house cGMP manufacturing capabilities (DHVI) to greatly expedite mAb countermeasures for future viral pandemics. The fully integrated platform will be a major advancement in rapid pandemic countermeasure development and will address the significant global challenge pandemic outbreaks have on both civilian and military populations. Learn more about DARPA. (DukeHealth Press Release)

Adjuvant Discovery Program

Duke PIs: H. Staats, S. Abraham (HHSN272201400054C)

This NIH contract is primarily based in the Duke Department of Pathology but uses the resources of the Duke RBL for Program Management and small animal challenge models for West Nile Virus and influenza virus. The overall goal of the program is to discover novel vaccine adjuvants to improve vaccine efficacy.

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CETR – Center of Excellence in Translational Research (Immunology & Influenza Virology Core)

Duke PI:  M. Blasi (NIH U19-AI109784)

The purpose of this UNC-based CETR (J. Ting) is to use a novel nanoparticle technology to deliver vaccines and vaccine adjuvants with the goal of improving vaccine outcome.  The overall goal of the Immunology/Influenza Virology Core based on the Duke RBL is to provide comprehensive and centralized biomarker and influenza host response monitoring to enhance product development activities of the center investigators.  Specifically the Duke RBL provides multiplex cytokine/chemokine profiling, high-throughput humoral response monitoring, comprehensive influenza virology support and small animal model support (mice/ferrets).

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Thymic and Peripheral Aspects of T cell Aging and Rejuvenation:  Human target verification and thymic function analysis

Duke PI:  L. Hale (NIH/NIA P01AG052359)

Using innovative forward-thinking mouse models and approaches, the Projects in this comprehensive discovery-based Thymus Rejuvenation PPG seek to (i) identify mechanisms behind reduced thymic production and impaired peripheral maintenance of T cells with aging and stress, and (ii) develop combined strategies to ameliorate these defects and improve immune defense against infection and cancer in the elderly. Critical to the translation potential of project-identified mechanisms, pathways and therapeutic targets in future programs, is proof-of-concept verification of applicability of mouse targets/pathways to human thymus aging, and centralized assessment of thymic function performed at Duke in the Duke RBL Immunology Unit.  

DOD Center for Long Term Follow-up of the Late Effects of Acute Radiation Exposure in Primates (Project 3:  Immune Recovery)

Duke PIs:  B. Chen, A. Macintyre (DoD W81XWH-15-1-0574)

This multi-investigator center based at Wake Forest Primate Center investigates the late effects of acute radiation exposure in mice and primates. In Project 3 we hypothesize that both thymopoiesis and peripheral expansion contribute to T cell reconstitution after radiation injury and the relative contribution of these two pathways depends on the dose of radiation.  In this project we will: define the roles of thymopoiesis and peripheral expansion in overall T cell reconstitution after radiation-induced injury based on radiation dose; and determine if therapeutic agents identified in our previous studies are able to promote or accelerate overall T cell immunity after radiation injury.

AC STI CRC – Atlantic Coast Sexually Transmitted Infections Cooperative Research Center (Host Response Monitoring Core)

Duke PIs: A. Macintyre, H. Staats (NIH U19-AI113170)

The goals of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences-based AC STI CRC (A. Jerse) are to further the understanding of the immunobiology of gonorrhea, chlamydial infection, and gonorrhea/chlamydial coinfections with the aim of developing novel immunotherapies and a gonorrhea vaccine. The Duke RBL Immunology Unit was awarded the Host Response Monitoring Core to provide centralized, comprehensive and consistent immune monitoring (humoral, cellular and multiplex biomarker assays; Human and Mouse studies)

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RadCCORE – Radiation Countermeasures Center of Research Excellence (Immune Monitoring Core)

Duke PIs:  N. Chao, D. Kirsch, B, Sullenger, B. Chen, A. Macintyre (NIH U19-AI067798)

The RadCCORE based at Duke supports an Immune Monitoring Core comprised of technologies and services offered by two service laboratories within the Duke Human Vaccine Institute (DHVI):  the DHVI Flow Cytometry Facility and RBL Immunology Unit. The Immune Monitoring Core centrally provides RadCCORE investigators with high quality, state-of-the-art cell sorting, multiplex cytokine/chemokine assays, and T cell receptor gene expression analysis for their basic and applied research efforts. 

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EQAPOL – External Quality Assurance Program Oversight Laboratory (Luminex/Multiplex Proficiency Testing Program)

Duke PIs: T. Denny (HHSN272201000045C)

The EQAPOL based at Duke (DHVI/Duke RBL) is an NIH contract-funded resource to support the development, implementation and oversight of external quality assurance programs that monitor laboratories involved in HIV/AIDS research and vaccine trials around the world. EQAPOL Luminex assesses the proficiency of NIAID/DAIDS-supported and other interested research laboratories at performing a bead-based Luminex assay to quantify cytokine levels in human serum.

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EQAPOL – External Quality Assurance Program Oversight Laboratory (Viral Diversity Program)

Duke PIs: T. Denny, F. Gao (HHSN272201000045C)

The EQAPOL based at Duke (DHVI/IVQA/Duke RBL) is an NIH contract-funded resource to support the development, implementation and oversight of external quality assurance programs that monitor laboratories involved in HIV/AIDS research and vaccine trials around the world. The goal of the EQAPOL Viral Diversity program based out of the Duke RBL is to establish a set of fully characterized clade-specific HIV virus panels representative of early acute HIV infections that are consistent with the degree of viral evolution present globally. Panels are then shared with investigators world-wide for the developing new assays, validating assay platforms, assisting regulators to evaluate test kits, monitoring hiv drug resistance and informing vaccine development.

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Excess research support capacity in the RBL is also available to investigators as cost recovery through the three collaborative shared resource units. 

DHVI - Duke Regional Biocontainment Laboratory Data Management Plan 

Contact us to discuss how the RBL can support your research grants and contracts.