Macatangay Laboratory

The Macatangay Lab is involved in research on the role of immune regulatory mechanisms in inflammatory conditions, such as chronic HIV-associated inflammation, and on the assessment of different immunotherapeutic strategies for achieving HIV remission off antiretroviral therapy. In addition, the Macatangay Lab also serves as the main specimen processing lab and repository for the University of Pittsburgh Clinical Research Site.

Research Areas

  1. Adenosine pathway in chronic viral infections: The adenosine signaling pathway is an established mechanism for regulating inflammation. Levels of adenosine dramatically increase in inflammatory conditions in order to protect tissue damage. We are evaluating how alterations or defects in this pathway during chronic viral infections, such as in HIV, lead to chronic inflammation and comorbidities, and are investigating possible therapeutic strategies. Similarly, we evaluate how the pathway could be detrimental in chronic viral infections by decreasing antigen-specific responses.
  1. Immunoregulation in HIV: Apart from the adenosine pathway, other mechanisms of immune regulation such as through immune regulatory cells and checkpoint inhibitors, have also been shown to play a role in the pathogenesis and persistence of HIV, as well as influence immunotherapeutic strategies. They could be detrimental in that they suppress HIV-specific responses thereby leading to viral persistence. On the other hand, they could be beneficial as they could suppress chronic HIV-associated inflammation which has been linked to an increased risk of chronic diseases. We evaluate how these mechanisms affect other factors that contribute to chronic HIV-associated inflammation and viral persistence.
  1. HIV Immunotherapy: An important aspect of HIV cure research is to evaluate immunotherapeutic strategies to boost HIV-specific responses. Through in vitro and ex vivo studies, we assess strategies that can then be translated into clinical trials. Our laboratory closely works with the Clinical Research team of the Division to evaluate these different strategies that aim to achieve HIV remission off ART through innovative clinical trials. In these studies, not only do we perform assays to evaluate immune responses resulting from these strategies and but also evaluate how these strategies affect levels of inflammation and immune activation. In addition, we serve as the main specimen processing site and specimen repository.
Division of Infectious Diseases
Academic Administrative Office

818 Scaife Hall
3550 Terrace Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15261

Center for Care of Infectious Diseases

Falk Medical Building
3601 Fifth Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Patient Appointments: 412-647-7228