Regulators of allogeneic stem cell engraftment, graft versus host disease and graft-versus leukaemia

Project Details

A major component of the curative potential of allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (alloHSCT) is the immune mediated graft-versus-leukaemia (GVL) effect. AlloHSCT is limited however by significant toxicity related to conditioning intensity, immunosuppression and associated opportunistic infections and graft-versus host disease (GVHD). Our group aims to understand and apply the efficacy of natural killer (NK) cell biology as both a means of controlling both recipient immunity and residual tumour cells.

We hypothesise that utilising either donor NK cells with enhanced function or limiting recipient NK cell function pre-transplant will allow reduction of conditioning intensity, promote donor T cell engraftment, and promote GVL effects whilst lowering the risks of GVHD.


  • Dr Joanne Davis, Postdoctoral Research Officer
  • Mrs Mandy Ludford-Menting, Research Assistant


  • Dr Nick Huntington, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, VIC, Australia

Research Publications

  1. Davis, J. E., Harvey, M., Gherardin, N. A., Koldej, R., Huntington, N., Neeson, P., . . . Ritchie, D. S. (2015). A radio-resistant perforin-expressing lymphoid population controls allogeneic T cell engraftment, activation, and onset of graft-versus-host disease in mice. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant, 21(2), 242-249. doi:10.1016/j.bbmt.2014.11.003.

Research Group

ACRF Translational Research Laboratory

Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology

School Research Themes

Cancer in Medicine

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

Medicine and Radiology

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