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About the Center for Systems and Engineering Immunology

John Tsang, PhD
Director, Center for Systems & Engineering Immunology

Professor of Immunobiology and Biomedical Engineering

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Thank you for visiting the Yale Center for Systems and Engineering Immunology (CSEI) at the Yale University School of Medicine (YSM). Our Center takes the view that the immune system provides:

  1. A fascinating system for developing quantitative and predictive models with rich applications in human health. In addition to infection, vaccination, and autoimmune responses, the interaction between the immune system and physiologic systems represents a research frontier that is a central focus of the CSEI.
  2. A rich platform for engineering cellular and molecular sensors and actuators that function in diverse tissues. For example, immune cells surveil all tissues and can thus potentially be leveraged to provide rich longitudinal data about tissue and organ statuses and health.
  3. An ideal playground for the development of systems and quantitative biology concepts, design principles, and tools. Indeed, the immune system exhibits many unique properties of biological systems, including somatic evolution, multiscale signal integration, and functional robustness emerging from cell-to-cell variations and cell population averaging.

Measurement, engineering, and computational (including machine learning) technologies are fundamental to our research and training mission. The research and training activities of the CSEI are organized by Technology Platforms and Scientific Programs and their intersections. CSEI Core Member faculty help oversee individual areas and cross-cutting themes. Scientific Interest Groups work to coalesce expertise and training around specific areas, such as computational analysis of multimodal single cell data, immune cell engineering, and human organoid systems for immune system modeling.

CSEI also serves as a home for professional computational immunologists/biologists working in various research labs at Yale, and in turn, relies on such community members to contribute some time and expertise to develop and maintain the common infrastructure and research/training environment at the CSEI.

Finally, the CSEI pursues our missions by engaging, training, and supporting underrepresented scientists and junior scientists. For more than a decade, my own lab has been studying the basis of human immune variability across diverse human populations, from pregnancy to infancy to throughout the lifespan of healthy individuals and sick patients from geographic locations around the globe. The Center will continue to expand on this embracement of diversity in pursuit of our scientific and training goals. For example, we are working with partners to develop technologies to build local systems immunology capacities in lower-to-middle income countries. Our goal is to leverage local human resources so that systems, computational, and engineering immunology can be conducted in a distributed manner to study diverse populations in locations around the globe.

Contact Us

Please reach out to us if you are interested in joining CSEI or if you have ideas about how we can work together!