Gerald T. Nepom, M.D., Ph.D

Gerald T. Nepom, M.D., Ph.D

Director, Benaroya Research Institute; Director of Immune Tolerance Network, and Affiliate Professor, Immunology

Dr. Nepom received his Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from Harvard. He attended the University of Washington, receiving his Ph.D. in Biochemistry in 1977 and his M.D. in 1978. After post-doctoral work in immunogenetics in the Department of Pathology at Harvard Medical School, he returned to Seattle, joining the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the University of Washington Medical School Faculty in 1982. Since 1985 he has been Member and Director of the Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason.

Contact Info

Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason
1201 Ninth Avenue
Seattle, WA 98101-2795
Phone: 206-287-8812
Fax: 206-233-7638

Research Areas

  • Tolerance & Autoimmunity


Benaroya Research


Gerald Nepom on PubMed

Projects in Dr. Nepom's laboratory are focused on identifying and understanding molecular and genetic mechanisms contributing to triggering of autoimmune disorders. A combination of in vitro studies, preclinical models, and human T cell profiling is used to evaluate autoreactive T cell lineage and fate determination. Translational and clinical applications include evaluation of the role of HLA class II genes in the etiology of type I diabetes and adult and juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, and use of immunological monitoring tools for predicting disease susceptibility and response to therapy in clinical trials.

1: Bollyky PL, Vernon RB, Falk BA, Preisinger A, Gooden MD, Nepom GT, Gebe JA. 'IL-10 induction from implants delivering pancreatic islets and hyaluronan.' J Diabetes Res. 2013;2013:342479. doi: 10.1155/2013/342479. Epub 2013 Jul 22. PubMed PMID: 23971054; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3736405.

2: Obermoser G, Presnell S, Domico K, Xu H, Wang Y, Anguiano E, Thompson-Snipes L, Ranganathan R, Zeitner B, Bjork A, Anderson D, Speake C, Ruchaud E, Skinner J, Alsina L, Sharma M, Dutartre H, Cepika A, Israelsson E, Nguyen P, Nguyen QA, Harrod AC, Zurawski SM, Pascual V, Ueno H, Nepom GT, Quinn C, Blankenship D, Palucka K, Banchereau J, Chaussabel D. 'Systems scale interactive exploration reveals quantitative and qualitative differences in response to influenza and pneumococcal vaccines'. Immunity. 2013 Apr 18;38(4):831-44. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2012.12.008. PubMed PMID: 23601689; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3681204.

3: Nepom GT, Ehlers M, Mandrup-Poulsen T. 'Anti-cytokine therapies in T1D: Concepts and strategies'
. Clin Immunol. 2013 Feb 14. doi:pii: S1521-6616(13)00029-6. 10.1016/j.clim.2013.02.003. [Epub ahead of print]  ubMed PMID: 23510726; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3700624.

4: Sarikonda G, Sachithanantham S, Manenkova Y, Kupfer T, Posgai A, Wasserfall C, Bernstein P, Straub L, Pagni PP, Schneider D, Calvo TR, Coulombe M, Herold K, Gill RG, Atkinson M, Nepom G, Ehlers M, Staeva T, Garren H, Steinman L, Chan AC,  von Herrath M. Transient B-cell depletion with anti-CD20 in combination with proinsulin DNA vaccine or oral insulin: immunologic effects and efficacy in NOD mice. PLoS One. 2013;8(2):e54712. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0054712. Epub 2013 Feb 6. PubMed PMID: 23405091; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3566105.

5: Vernon RB, Preisinger A, Gooden MD, D'Amico LA, Yue BB, Bollyky PL, Kuhr CS, Hefty TR, Nepom GT, Gebe JA. 'Reversal of diabetes in mice with a bioengineered islet implant incorporating a type I collagen hydrogel and sustained release of vascular endothelial growth factor'. Cell Transplant. 2012;21(10):2099-110. doi: 10.3727/096368912X636786. PubMed PMID: 23231959.

6: Nepom GT, Buckner JH. A functional framework for interpretation of genetic associations in T1D. Curr Opin Immunol. 2012 Oct;24(5):516-21. doi: 10.1016/j.coi.2012.07.003. Epub 2012 Jul 26. Review. PubMed PMID: 22841349.

7: Matthis J, Nepom GT. T cell autoreactivity in the transplant milieu. Am J Transplant. 2012 Jul;12(7):1674-81. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-6143.2012.04109.x. Epub 2012 May 29. PubMed PMID: 22642536.

8: Nepom GT. MHC class II tetramers. J Immunol. 2012 Mar 15;188(6):2477-82. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1102398. Review. PubMed PMID: 22389204; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3297979.

9: Schubert DA, Gordo S, Sabatino JJ Jr, Vardhana S, Gagnon E, Sethi DK, Seth NP, Choudhuri K, Reijonen H, Nepom GT, Evavold BD, Dustin ML, Wucherpfennig KW. 'Self-reactive human CD4 T cell clones form unusual immunological synapses'. J Exp  Med. 2012 Feb 13;209(2):335-52. doi: 10.1084/jem.20111485. Epub 2012 Feb 6. PubMed PMID: 22312112; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3280872.

10: Ehlers MR, Nepom GT. Immune-directed therapy for type 1 diabetes at the clinical level: the Immune Tolerance Network (ITN) experience. Rev Diabet Stud. 2012 Winter;9(4):359-71. doi: 10.1900/RDS.2012.9.359. Epub 2012 Dec 28. PubMed PMID: 23804273; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3740703.

11: Evanko SP, Potter-Perigo S, Bollyky PL, Nepom GT, Wight TN. 'Hyaluronan and versican in the control of human T-lymphocyte adhesion and migration'. Matrix Biol. 2012 Mar;31(2):90-100. doi:  0.1016/j.matbio.2011.10.004. Epub 2011 Nov 20. PubMed PMID: 22155153; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3288568.

12: Robins H, Desmarais C, Matthis J, Livingston R, Andriesen J, Reijonen H, Carlson C, Nepom G, Yee C, Cerosaletti K. 'Ultra-sensitive detection of rare T cell clones'. J Immunol Methods. 2012 Jan 31;375(1-2):14-9. doi:
10.1016/j.jim.2011.09.001. Epub 2011 Sep 10. PubMed PMID: 21945395; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3721519.

13: Raddassi K, Kent SC, Yang J, Bourcier K, Bradshaw EM, Seyfert-Margolis V, Nepom GT, Kwok WW, Hafler DA. 'Increased frequencies of myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein/MHC class II-binding CD4 cells in patients with multiple sclerosis'. J Immunol. 2011 Jul 15;187(2):1039-46. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1001543. Epub 2011 Jun 8. PubMed PMID: 21653833; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3131477.

14: Khadra A, Pietropaolo M, Nepom GT, Sherman A. 'Investigating the role of T-cell avidity and killing efficacy in relation to type 1 diabetes prediction'. PLoS One. 2011 May 10;6(5):e14796. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0014796. PubMed PMID: 21573001; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3091860.

15: Snir O, Rieck M, Gebe JA, Yue BB, Rawlings CA, Nepom G, Malmström V, Buckner JH. 'Identification and functional characterization of T cells reactive to citrullinated vimentin in HLA-DRB1*0401-positive humanized mice and rheumatoid arthritis patients'. Arthritis Rheum. 2011 Oct;63(10):2873-83. doi: 10.1002/art.30445. PubMed PMID: 21567378; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3174345.

16: Kornum BR, Kawashima M, Faraco J, Lin L, Rico TJ, Hesselson S, Axtell RC, Kuipers H, Weiner K, Hamacher A, Kassack MU, Han F, Knudsen S, Li J, Dong X, Winkelmann J, Plazzi G, Nevsimalova S, Hong SC, Honda Y, Honda M, Högl B, Ton TG, Montplaisir J, Bourgin P, Kemlink D, Huang YS, Warby S, Einen M, Eshragh JL, Miyagawa T, Desautels A, Ruppert E, Hesla PE, Poli F, Pizza F, Frauscher B, Jeong JH, Lee SP, Strohl KP, Longstreth WT Jr, Kvale M, Dobrovolna M, Ohayon MM, Nepom GT, Wichmann HE, Rouleau GA, Gieger C, Levinson DF, Gejman PV, Meitinger T, Peppard P, Young T, Jennum P, Steinman L, Tokunaga K, Kwok PY, Risch N, Hallmayer
J, Mignot E. 'Common variants in P2RY11 are associated with narcolepsy'. Nat Genet. 2011 Jan;43(1):66-71. doi: 10.1038/ng.734. Epub 2010 Dec 19. Erratum in: Nat Genet. 2011 Oct;43(10):1040. PubMed PMID: 21170044; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3019286.

17: Bluestone JA, Auchincloss H, Nepom GT, Rotrosen D, St Clair EW, Turka LA. 'The Immune Tolerance Network at 10 years: tolerance research at the bedside'. Nat Rev Immunol. 2010 Nov;10(11):797-803. doi: 10.1038/nri2869. Review. PubMed PMID: 20972473.

B.A., Biochemistry, Harvard University
Ph.D., Biochemistry, University of Washington
M.D., University of Washington

Laboratory Staff
Barbara Droker,
John Gebe,
Tuan Nguyen,