Gregory David Sempowski, PhD

Professor in Medicine
Professor of Pathology
Affiliate, Duke Global Health Institute
Member of the Duke Human Vaccine Institute
Campus mail 909 S. Lasalle St, Rm 1019 Global Health Research Building,, Durham, NC 27705
Phone (919) 684-4386
Email address greg.sempowski@duke.edu

Dr. Sempowski earned his PhD in Immunology from the University of Rochester and was specifically trained in the areas of inflammation, wound healing, and host response (innate and adaptive).  Dr. Sempowski contributed substantially to the field of lung inflammation and fibrosis defining the roles of pulmonary fibroblast heterogeneity and CD40/CD40L signaling in regulating normal and pathogenic lung inflammation.  During his postdoctoral training with Dr. Barton F. Haynes at Duke University, Dr. Sempowski focused on human immunology and more specifically immune reconstitution in settings of immune deficiency.  This resulted in publication of seminal findings regarding the cellular and molecular mechanisms that drive attenuation of immune function in the elderly. 

Since joining the Duke School of Medicine faculty in 2000, Dr. Sempowski has developed an independent research program studying immune deficiency associated with aging and radiation exposure. Dr. Sempowski is highly collaborative and works closely with investigators across the US, Europe, Australia and Japan and is internationally recognized as a thought leader in thymic aging, immunosenescence and multiplex biomarker analysis.

In 2017 Dr. Sempowski assumed Directorship of the Duke Global Health Research Building, a division of the Duke Human Vaccine Institute.  This state-of-the-art Regional Biocontainment Laboratory (RBL) was built with funding from the NIH to support basic research to develop drugs, diagnostics and vaccines for emerging/reemerging infections and biodefense.  The Duke RBL has a comprehensive safety and operations program to provide the Duke and RTP communities biocontainment facilities for BSL2, BSL3, and Select Agent research.  The facility is home to a portfolio of sponsored research programs focused on biosafety and biopreparedness, vaccine and therapeutic development, host response and immune monitoring and assay proficiency and quality assurance. 

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., University of Rochester, 1996

Publications

Saunders, Kevin O., Esther Lee, Robert Parks, David R. Martinez, Dapeng Li, Haiyan Chen, Robert J. Edwards, et al. “SARS-CoV-2 vaccination induces neutralizing antibodies against pandemic and pre-emergent SARS-related coronaviruses in monkeys.” Biorxiv, February 17, 2021. https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.02.17.431492.

PMID
33619494
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McClain, Micah T., Florica J. Constantine, Ricardo Henao, Yiling Liu, Ephraim L. Tsalik, Thomas W. Burke, Julie M. Steinbrink, et al. “Dysregulated transcriptional responses to SARS-CoV-2 in the periphery.” Nat Commun 12, no. 1 (February 17, 2021): 1079. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-21289-y.

PMID
33597532
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Edwards, Robert J., Katayoun Mansouri, Victoria Stalls, Kartik Manne, Brian Watts, Rob Parks, Katarzyna Janowska, et al. “Cold sensitivity of the SARS-CoV-2 spike ectodomain.” Nat Struct Mol Biol 28, no. 2 (February 2021): 128–31. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41594-020-00547-5.

PMID
33402708
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Hale, Laura P., Lynn Cheatham, Andrew N. Macintyre, Bonnie LaFleur, Brittany Sanders, Jesse Troy, Joanne Kurtzberg, and Gregory D. Sempowski. “T cell-depleted cultured pediatric thymus tissue as a model for some aspects of human age-related thymus involution.” Geroscience, January 9, 2021. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11357-020-00301-1.

PMID
33420705
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LaFleur, Bonnie, Andrew N. Macintyre, Joanne Kurtzberg, Gregory D. Sempowski, Laura P. Hale, Brittany Sanders, Jesse Troy, and Lynn Cheatham. “Data and Code from: T Cell-Depleted Cultured Pediatric Thymus Tissue as a Model for Some Aspects of Human Age-Related Thymus Involution,” January 4, 2021. https://doi.org/10.7924/r47d2xg50.

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Li, Dapeng, Robert J. Edwards, Kartik Manne, David R. Martinez, Alexandra Schäfer, S Munir Alam, Kevin Wiehe, et al. “The functions of SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing and infection-enhancing antibodies in vitro and in mice and nonhuman primates.” Biorxiv, January 2, 2021. https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.12.31.424729.

PMID
33442694
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Lederer, Katlyn, Diana Castaño, Daniela Gómez Atria, Thomas H. Oguin, Sidney Wang, Tomaz B. Manzoni, Hiromi Muramatsu, et al. “SARS-CoV-2 mRNA Vaccines Foster Potent Antigen-Specific Germinal Center Responses Associated with Neutralizing Antibody Generation.” Immunity 53, no. 6 (December 15, 2020): 1281-1295.e5. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.immuni.2020.11.009.

PMID
33296685
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Giroux, Nicholas S., Shengli Ding, Micah T. McClain, Thomas W. Burke, Elizabeth Petzold, Hong A. Chung, Grecia R. Palomino, et al. “Chromatin remodeling in peripheral blood cells reflects COVID-19 symptom severity.” Biorxiv, December 5, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.12.04.412155.

PMID
33300002
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Leduc, Isabelle, Kristie L. Connolly, Afrin Begum, Knashka Underwood, Stephen Darnell, William M. Shafer, Jacqueline T. Balthazar, et al. “The serogroup B meningococcal outer membrane vesicle-based vaccine 4CMenB induces cross-species protection against Neisseria gonorrhoeae.” Plos Pathog 16, no. 12 (December 2020): e1008602. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1008602.

PMID
33290434
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Thanh, Lam Tuan, Dena L. Toffaletti, Jennifer L. Tenor, Charles Giamberardino, Gregory D. Sempowski, Yohannes Asfaw, Hai Trieu Phan, et al. “Assessing the virulence of Cryptococcus neoformans causing meningitis in HIV infected and uninfected patients in Vietnam.” Med Mycol 58, no. 8 (November 10, 2020): 1149–61. https://doi.org/10.1093/mmy/myaa013.

PMID
32196550
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