The Tilburgs Lab investigates how maternal immune cells establish immune tolerance to fetal and placental allo-antigens and remain competent to respond to infections both systemically and in placental tissues.
Current projects in the Tilburgs Lab include:
- Investigation of the mechanisms by which human decidual NK cells, effector T cells and regulatory T cells recognize HLA-C allo-antigens and its relevance in the development of pregnancy complications such as spontaneous preterm birth and preeclampsia
- Identification of factors that regulate decidual CD8+ T cell and decidual NK cell function and dysfunction that allows for placental and fetal development, as well as a reversal of their dysfunctional state to provide immunity to placental infections.
These projects are transforming the understanding of how interactions between fetal trophoblasts and maternal immune cells establish maternal fetal tolerance and immunity to infection as well as how defects in these processes may contribute to the development of pregnancy complications. Learn more about our current projects.