Dr. Bryan Heit
“I completed my BMSc at Western. I keep the lab running smoothly, do experiments and play Pokemon Go. I also manage the MNI Widefield Microscopy Facility.”
Masters of Immunology (University of Manitoba, Canada)
Amena is currently exploring how GATA2 over-expression drives macrophage dysfunction and early plaque development during atherosclerosis.
Matt is investigating the link between influenza and other pneumonias and the subsequent increased risk of suffering a myocardial infarct.
Matt is co-supervised by Dr. Aleks Leligdowicz
Yasamin is researching how macrophages polarize and develop trained immunity in response to acute respiratory distress.
Yasamin is co-supervised by Dr. Aleks Leligdowicz
Sarah is investigating how intra-phagosomal signal affects antigen presentation and MHC II expression.
Madison seeks to understand how the cleavage-mediated inactivation of immune receptors by ADAM-family proteases is regulated.
Alice is identifying the RAB-family GTPases and their regulators which allow immune cells to “choose” whether to present antigens from a phagocytosed target.
Tasnia is developing the next generation of tools for tracking and quantifying antigen processing and presentation.
Agata is developing methods to use CRISPR to modify macrophage function and activity.
Work Study Students
Recent MSc, PhD, and Post-Doctoral Fellow Graduates
MSc, February 2023
Jasika identified the inflammatory profile of macrophages in the osteoarthritic joint and identified a central cellular pathway that drove this inflammatory polarization.
Jasika was co-supervised by Dr. Tom Appleton
Postdoctoral Associate, 2022
“I obtained my PhD in 2019 in Immunology at Brunel University London where I focused on role of Egr2 in CD8 tumor infiltrating lymphocytes under melanoma condition. In 2020 I moved to Canada, to pursue a post-doctorate in Dr. Bryan Heit laboratory. In my current postdoc position, I am investigating antigen-sorting mechanisms by phagocytes in the development of CD4 T cell responses. Outside of the lab, I enjoy playing soccer, jogging, and cooking.”
MSc, Aug 2021
“I originally joined the Heit Lab as an Honours Project student during my final year of undergraduate studies, and now I am continuing my project on elucidating the role of a unique protein, Erc1, in regulating MHC class II trafficking pathways for graduate school. To do so, I use fluorescence microscopy to visualize the dynamics and localization patterns of various trafficking regulators in phagocytes.”
MSc, May 2022
Kasia investigated the role of GATA2 in macrophage apoptosis during atherosclerosis.
Minhyuk (Paul) Mun
MSc, May 2022
Paul investigated the role of GATA2 in macrophage proliferation during atherosclerosis.
Austin Le Lam
MSc, August 2020
“I am a former honors thesis student and current master’s student studying the formation of the efferocytic synapse.”
PhD, Sept 2019
Charles was a highly successful MD/PhD student in the Heit lab. During his PhD, Charles discovered the role of Rab17 in preventing antigen presentation following efferocyotsis, and was the first person to identify a role for GATA2 in the early pathology of atherosclerosis.
MSc, Oct 2020
Bachelor of Medicine & Surgery (University of Dhaka, Bangladesh)
Tara explored how MERTK engages in efferocytosis cooperatively with integrins, and mediates this cross-talk through engaging canonical integrin signaling pathways, using pharmacological inhibitors and Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET).
Elaine developed the foundational work for our current studies into MHC II trafficking and antigen presentation following efferocyotsis.
Adam developed our 3D printed microchamber system and began our exploration of the pathways regulating MHC II trafficking.
Kyle explored the signalling pathways regulating MERTK-mediated efferocyotsis.
Darius discovered that CD93 functions as an apoptotic cell opsonin, via the αXβ2 integrin.
Amanda investigated the evolution of MERTK and how recently evolved features altered its binding affinity and sensitivity as a viral receptor.
Jack determined that CD93 functioned as an apoptotic cell opsonin and begun identification of its receptor.
Masha (Maria) Goiko
Masha developed our single particle tracking infrastructure, and using this technology, identified a previously unknown microdomain (cages) in the membranes of cells. She also used this technology to improve our understanding of the physical processes controlling protein diffusion in cellular membranes.
Jessica began our characterisation of CD93, and investigated its potential role as a directly efferocytic receptor.
Ekene began our investigations into MERTK, and developed many of the molecular biology platforms we have used to understand this efferocytic receptor.
Yohan first identified Rab17 as a protein uniquely recruited to efferosomes, and developed many of the tools we use to explore this GTPases role in efferocytosis and phagocytosis.
Undergraduate and Other Members
- Catherine Jung
- Maria Abu Taka
- Kasia Wodz
- Minhyuk Min
- Alex Lac
- Austin Lam
- Mara Rosoga
- Ryan LaPenna
- Sara Ndombele
- Caroline Banas
- Darius Lau
- Janakan Somasundaram
- Dean Argintaru
- Elaine Liu
- Melanie Sutton
- Yadin Bornstein
- Amanda Evans
- Xinyi Gao
- Jessica Ellins
- Rajiv Jain
- Eric Roszell
- Sarah Ooi
- Johnathan Hu
- Neha Sharma
- Amanda Evans
- Jack Blackburn
- Ashley Ma
- Angela Kipp
- Janakan Somasundaram
- Megha Shetty
- Xinxin Tang
- Ushra Khan
- Ryan Yip
- Joshua Yiu
- Isuri Vidyarathne
- Charlie Zhao
- Tiffany Mustonen
- Peter Guo
- David Zheng