Having originally trained in Veterinary Medicine, Jie undertook a PhD in Infection and Immunology with Professor Ivan Morrison at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh. The research involved the molecular characterisation of the bovine Granzyme gene family and identified a critical role of granzyme B in CD8+ T cell-mediated killing of cells infected by Theileria. Parva. This study provided the knowledge and tools that have subsequently been used to refine and enhance the immunological evaluation of T cell responses induced in vaccine trials against East Coast fever in Africa. Following this, Jie joined the group of Professor Benedict Seddon in the Francis Crick Institute Mill Hill Laboratory. Among other findings, he identified a novel function of Interleukin (IL)-7 in innate lymphoid cell (ILC)-3-dependent lymphocyte migration into lymph nodes.
To pursue his passion in lymphocyte migration and activation in cancer, Jie joined Dr. Rahul’s lab in 2018 and is currently a College Research Associate at Homerton College. Here his focus is on the earliest adaptive immune events that occur during cancer metastasis using mouse primary and metastatic tumour models in conjunction with cellular and molecular immunology techniques. This study will enable new insights into how adaptive immune responses primed by primary tumour deposits are recruited to metastases and provide an understanding of the influence of primary tumours on immunity to metastasis.
Jie is also working on inhibitory mechanisms which restrict Treg cell activation under homeostatic conditions and during the immunosuppression responses to tumours.