Research group - Annika Karlsson

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The underlying mechanisms of HIV specific T cell function and pathogenesis

To be able to establish sustainable and effective HIV-specific immune responses we need to fully characterize HIV-1 specific T cells that control viral replication. In my group, we are using a translational approach with basic studies linking viral evolution and immunological patterns in clinical samples to gain a thorough understand how HIV specific T cell functions influence the HIV disease progression. Specifically, we aim to unravel basic immunological and virological dynamics so that immunological approaches can be developed to restore T cell function and thereby provide a framework to rationally design a prophylactic or therapeutic vaccine.

Research group leader Annika Karlsson

Senior researcher

Annika Karlsson

Organizational unit: Division of Clinical Microbiology

Group members

Annika KarlssonSenior researcher
Lydia ScharfResearch assistant on study grant

Research techniques

  • FACS analysis (currently 15 colours)
  • Intracellular cytokine staining
  • Enzyme-linked Immunospot (ELISPOT) assay
  • Proliferation assay
  • Killing assay
  • Cell culture
  • RT-PCR
  • Single genome sequencing
  • Cloning

External funding

The Swedish Research Council, Karolinska Institutet, The Swedish Society of Medicine,  The Swedish Physicians Against AIDS Research Foundation, Magnus Bergvalls Foundation

Teaching assignments

Medical virology (e.g. HIV), antiviral treatments, virus-host interactions, and immunology

Karolinska Institutet: Medical students - Disease in man I and II; Master's/Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Biomedicine, Study Programme in Biomedical Laboratory Science, and postgraduate courses.

Uppsala University: Molecular Infection Biology Programme

Selected publications

T-bet and Eomes are differentially linked to the exhausted phenotype of CD8+ T cells in HIV infection.
Buggert M, Tauriainen J, Yamamoto T, Frederiksen J, Ivarsson M, Michaëlsson J, et al
PLoS Pathog. 2014 Jul;10(7):e1004251

Multiparametric bioinformatics distinguish the CD4/CD8 ratio as a suitable laboratory predictor of combined T cell pathogenesis in HIV infection.
Buggert M, Frederiksen J, Noyan K, Svärd J, Barqasho B, Sönnerborg A, et al
J. Immunol. 2014 Mar;192(5):2099-108

Combination of immune and viral factors distinguishes low-risk versus high-risk HIV-1 disease progression in HLA-B*5701 subjects.
Norström M, Buggert M, Tauriainen J, Hartogensis W, Prosperi M, Wallet M, et al
J. Virol. 2012 Sep;86(18):9802-16

Interdisciplinary analysis of HIV-specific CD8+ T cell responses against variant epitopes reveals restricted TCR promiscuity.
Hoof I, Pérez C, Buggert M, Gustafsson R, Nielsen M, Lund O, et al
J. Immunol. 2010 May;184(9):5383-91

Broadly immunogenic HLA class I supertype-restricted elite CTL epitopes recognized in a diverse population infected with different HIV-1 subtypes.
Pérez C, Larsen M, Gustafsson R, Norström M, Atlas A, Nixon D, et al
J. Immunol. 2008 Apr;180(7):5092-100