The Office of the Vice President for Research recognizes Xin Luo, an assistant professor of immunology with the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, for exploring the immune system and its response to disease.
Luo’s laboratory seeks to better understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms of inflammation. In particular, it focuses on plasmacytoid dendritic cells, which produce a group of inflammatory molecules called interferons.
A faculty member in the Department of Biomedical Sciences and Pathobiology, Luo strives to learn more about the mechanisms of interferon production and the roles of such inflammatory responses in autoimmune diseases, such as lupus.
Luo’s research program also deals with antibody production from B cells and its possibly defective response against infections, overreaction to self-molecules, or various types of leukemia and lymphoma across multiple checkpoints.
With an understanding of the immune system and its response to disease, Luo engineers stem cells isolated from the blood or bone marrow to eventually become desired antibody-producing B cells. This approach now enables designing much-needed novel immunotherapies for a variety of immunological diseases.
Prior to joining Virginia Tech, Luo was a postdoctoral Fellow and a research scientist at the California Institute of Technology’s Division of Biology. She previously held instructor and teaching assistant positions at Pennsylvania State University.
Luo completed a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and molecular biology from Beijing University, where she was class president. Luo also earned a master’s degree in nutritional sciences and a doctorate in immunology and nutritional sciences from Pennsylvania State University. She is a member of the American Association of Immunologists.