Division of Infection and Immunity


Dr Gabriele Pollara

My clinical training specialty is in Infectious Diseases & Microbiology, and during this time I developed an interest in better understanding immunity to tuberculosis, a pathogen that has circulated in the human population for centuries, and yet still has a significant impact on morbidity and mortality worldwide.

In 2013 I was awarded a Wellcome Trust Postdoctoral Clinical Research Fellowship to study correlates of protection to tuberculosis, making use of both human in vivo challenge models and in vitro models of macrophage-tuberculosis interaction. The project was largely based in the laboratory of Dr Mahdad Noursadeghi (UCL) and involved recruitment of individuals infected with tuberculosis both in the UK and in Peru, in collaboration with Professor David Moore (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine).

I am now a NIHR Clinical Lecturer in Medical Microbiology at UCL, bringing together the observations made in my Postdoctoral Fellowship to workup future studies that aim to harness knowledge of the host immune response in tuberculosis infections to generate novel host-directed therapies


My work touches on two core themes in the group, namely investigating human immune responses to tuberculosis infection and improving comparative analysis of whole genome transcriptional data. I have focused particularly on the use of transcriptional modules (a.k.a. signatures) to deconvolute biological information from multicellular transcriptional datasets, developing software that ranks modules based on their sensitivity and specificity for their annotated functions.