Maini Group



To stay up to date with the latest news from the Maini lab, follow us on Twitter

Archived news stories [2012 - 2018]

June 2018:

We are very pleased to announce that Mala, with co-investigators Laura Pallett, Hans Stauss and Tim Meyer, has been awarded a CRUK Immunology Project grant to work on: 'Overcoming metabolic checkpoints for T cell immunotherapy of liver cancer'.

Post-doc Laura recently attended APASL in Taipei where she gave a talk on: 'Manipulation of the Innate-adaptive Immune Cell Axis in Chronic HBV Infection'.

 May 2018:
Mala gave a talk at the Immunometabolism meeting organised by the London Immunology Group discussing our latest work on HBV-specific T cell responses and cholesterol metabolism.

Congratulations also to PhD student Alice who was elected as an early careers representative on the BSI Forum.
 April 2018:

PhD student Alice and visiting fellow Nathalie attended the EASL International Liver Congress in Paris. Nathalie gave an inspiring talk entitled 'Rescuing HBV-specific T cell responses by modulating cholesterol metabolism'. Mala also gave a talk discussing novel HBV treatments.

Nathalie EASL


March 2018:

The Maini lab was invited to present at the Division of Infection and Immunity in the Virtual Virology series. Alice, Mariana and Kerstin all presented their latest data, with Laura giving a short overview. We very much enjoyed sharing our latest work!

Congratulations also to associate member Upkar Gill on the successful completion of his PhD.

February 2018:
The lab recently attended the Liver Immunology meeting at the Royal College of Anaesthetists organised by the London Immunology Group. Both Mala and Laura gave talks with Laura winning a prize for the best oral presentation.
  January 2018:
We are delighted to announce that Nekisa Zakeri has been awarded the UCL Wellcome PhD Programme for Clinicans and will be joining the Maini lab from September 2018.

Congratulations also to Laura Pallett who was awarded a prestigious place at the NIF Winter School on Advanced Immunology in Japan.
 December 2017:

The lab had a very enjoyable trip to Brighton where we attended the annual BSI conference. Post-docs Laura, Leo and Kerstin all gave brilliant talks, with Mala also invited to speak in the Immunometabolism session. Congratulations also to Laura Pallett who won first place in the Bright Sparks session with her talk entitled 'Induction of tissue-resident T cell as sentinels for therapeutic vaccination'.

BSI 2018
October 2017:

We were very pleased to host Xavier Forns from IDIBAPS Barcelona over the summer. We had lots of great discussion and are looking forward to collaborating in the future.

Congratulations also to Nick Easom on the successful completion of his PhD. Nick was a Wellcome Trust funded clinical fellow researching the role of NK cells in Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

Congratulations also to associate member Jyoti Hansi who completed her MD. 

We are also pleased to announce that Anna Jeffery-Smith has been co-awarded a Barts & The London Clinical Training Fellowship and BIA Research Fellowship, and will be joining the lab from January 2018.

Xavier Forns

Nick PhD
September 2017:

We are pleased to announce that Senior Research Associate Anna Schurich has been awarded a lectureship at Kings College London. We wish her all the best for a very successful career in science.


Anna King's College


 April 2017:

Lab members attended the "March for Science" in recognition of the importance of scientific research.

March 1

Also, congratulations to post-doc Laura who joined the BSI forum as an early career representative.

November 2016:
The lab enjoyed great talks and discussion at the UCL Infection, Immunity and Inflammation symposium and Laura presented her latest work on nutrient transported expression in antiviral T cells.

Alice and Laura were invited to present their latest data the BD Biosciences High-End Users meeting in Oxford, discussing their work on "Characterising elusive cell types: Small samples, big data".
 October 2016:
Postdoc Kerstin Stegmann gave a talk discussing her latest work on CXCR6+ liver-resident NK cells at the "16th Meeting of the Society for Natural Immunity" in Taurmina.
 Sepetember 2016:
Congratulations to PhD students, Nick and Alice, who both gave fantastic talks at the International HBV meeting in South Korea. Both Nick and Alice, along with Laura, recieved travel grants to attend the meeting.
 August 2016:

The Maini lab participated in - and won - the "Lab Olympics", raising over £270 for Prostate Cancer UK.

Members from the lab also had fun participating in the "NO-Hep" campaign to mark World Hepatitis Day and highlight the burden of the disease worldwide.

Lab olympics



June 2016:

We are extremely pleased to annouce that Mala has been elected to the presitgious Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences in reocgnition of her contribution to medical research.

mala maini

Wei-Chen Huang successfully completed his PhD study, entitled "NKG2D-dependent cross talk between NK cells and CD4 T cells in chronic hepatitis B" in June 2016 and has been awarded a full degree.



We are excited to announce that our member, Nick Easom has been awarded the PhD colloquium talk 1st prize and won £300.

May 2016:
We are delighted to announce that our member, Laura Pallett won the London Inflammatory Network short talk prize with her presentation related to nutrient transporters and antiviral T cells.

We congratulate Upkar Gill for the fantastic opportunity to collaborate with Antonio's Lab in Singapore as a part of his Wellcome Trust Fellowship.
March 2016:


We had a delightful time in Freiburg, Germany when our Lab group joined with the Robert Thimme Group. All of us participated enthusiastically in scientific & social activities with our friends and collaborators the whole trip.

October 2015:

Congratulations to Wei-Chen Huang for being awarded a bursary grant of € 400 by the European Federation of Immunological Societies for his NK cell presentation at the 2015 Natural Killer Cell Symposium in Gottingen, Germany.

Twitter for Maini Group has now been officially established! Please follow our updates.

June 2015:

We are excited to see that our recent publication, Pallett et al. Nat. Med. 2015 was picked up by a number of news outlets, including a News and Views article by Vincenzo Barnaba included in the same Nature Medicine edition and a Highlight article in Nature Reviews Gastroenterology Hepatology.  

We are once again proud to announce that a former PhD student of ours, Dimitra Peppa, has recently been awarded an MRC Clinician Scientist Fellowship entitled "Natural killer cell regulation of anti-viral T cell responses in the pathogenesis of HIV infection". This will build on findings from her work with us and will run until 2019. 

We are pleased to announce that Mala has been awarded a three-year MRC Project Grant to take forward the findings of our recent Nature Medicine publication (Pallett et al, 2015). The grant: 'Metabolic regulation of hepatic immunopathology by myeloid-derived suppressor cells' will be a collaborative effort involving Patrick Kennedy, Kito Fusai, Brian Davidson, Massimo Pinzani, William Rosenberg, Marcus Dorner, Jane McKeating, Margret Ashcroft, and Doreen Cantrell. 

March 2015:

We are also pleased to announce that Upkar Gill has been awarded a Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Training Fellowship entitled 'Harnessing the immune response in chronic HBV infection to optimize current treatment'. This project will run from 2015 to 2017 as part of a long standing collaboration with Patrick Kennedy at Barts & The London. 

We are pleased to welcome a new associate lab member - Victoria Male. She has been awarded the Wellcome Trust Henry Dale Fellowship to investigate 'Natural killer cell subsets in the liver, their phenotype, function and role in obesity-induced liver disease'. Funding has been awarded until 2019. 

February 2015: 
The EASL Sheila Sherlock Post-doctoral fellowship previously awarded to Itziar in 2014 has been extended and enabling her work developing genetically engineered CD8+ T cells.
January 2015:
Kerstin and Mala successfully organised the 4th UK NK Meeting, January 8th, 2015. This meeting was also well attended, great talks and discussion along with some ideal networking opportunities for our lab. 
October 2014:
Laura Pallett successfully completed her PhD, entitled "Metabolic regulation of hepatic immunopathology by myeloid-derived suppressor cells" in October 2014.
September 2014:
Mala along with Pietro Lampertico and George Papatheodoris recently organised a well attended EASL Special Conference. The meeting was entitled Optimal Management of HBV, Athens 26-27th Sep 2014. A report of this meeting is soon to be published in Journal of Hepatology.
June 2014:

Successful completion of BSc dissertations, John-Paul Carter - "Genetically engineering T cells to withstand the liver environment in chronic hepatitis B infection"; Jia Ying Toh - "Regulatory and pathogenic CD4+ T cell subsets in chronic hepatitis B infection". They both received BSc 1st class degrees.  

Lab retreat:

We spent a stimulating 2 days in a cottage surrounded by beautiful Hampshire countryside, discussing our research findings and strategy together. In between we found time for swims, walks, meals, drinks and lots of laughs together.

April 2014:

We are proud to announce that our division has won the Athena Swan Silver Award.

Nick began his Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Training Fellowship to last until 2017. 

March 2014:
Itziar was awarded the EASL Sheila Sherlock Post-doctoral fellowship (2014-15).
August 2013:
Laura was awarded the prize for the best oral presentation at the annual Division of Infection and Immunity research Colloquium and selected to present her work to the new UCL provost.
July 2013
Mala has been awarded a prestigious Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator Award, bringing in 5 years of funding for 2 post-docs and 1 research assistant, to be advertised autumn 2013. 

Wellcome Award Celebration_Maini Group2

Wellcome Award Celebration_Maini Group
June 2013:
The Maini lab has negotiated a 3 month research contract with UK-based company, Immune Targeting Systems Limited.
May 2013: 
Anna Schurich from the group was the Principle Applicant on a successful Fast Track grant from the UCLH Charities and NIHR Biomedical Research Centre. 
September 2012 
Mala was selected to organise the annual International HBV meeting with John Casey. The meeting was held in Christ Church, Oxford and was very well-attended and received.

maini group oxford