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    Last Name

    Vladimir Litvak PhD

    TitleAssistant Professor
    InstitutionUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
    DepartmentMicrobiology and Physiological Systems
    AddressUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
    368 Plantation Street, AS8.1059
    Worcester MA 01605
      Other Positions
      InstitutionUMMS - Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
      DepartmentImmunology and Microbiology Program

      InstitutionUMMS - Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
      DepartmentInterdisciplinary Graduate Program


        Academic Background

        Ph.D. (2005) Weizmann Institute of Science

        Post-doctoral training: Institute for Systems Biology, Seattle

        Research Information

        The innate immune system must tightly regulate the temporal dynamics and the extent of inflammatory responses to promote clearance of invading pathogens without excessive tissue damage. Pathogens are detected by pattern recognition receptors such as the Toll-like receptors (TLRs) which recognize microbial components and activate intracellular signaling pathways leading to the transcriptional induction of genes that are critical for protective inflammatory responses. Systems biology studies have demonstrated that TLR-induced inflammatory responses are controlled by the integration of transcriptional “on” and “off” switches with “amplifiers” and “attenuators”, altogether forming gene regulatory circuits. Dynamic interplay of transcription factors in these circuits determines the transcriptional profile of a target gene and ensures appropriate host response to invading pathogens. However, pathogens are equipped with a wide range of virulence factors to subvert host protective responses and to establish a niche for their survival and proliferation. Virulence factors dynamically interact with host transcription factors and chromatin remodeling proteins to rewire and reprogram host gene regulatory circuits. In my lab we aim at elucidating the mechanisms and consequences of pathogen-induced reprogramming of host gene regulatory networks. Understanding these complex host-pathogen interactions is critical for the discovery of novel antiviral therapies and rational vaccine design and development.

        Rotation Projects
        Lab rotation positions are available immediately. Please email Vladimir for info:

        Post Docs

        A postdoctoral position is available. We are looking for a postdoctoral fellow to study the functional role of gene regulatory circuits in transcriptional and epigenetic control of innate immune responses and anti-viral immunity. Strong background in molecular/cell biology and writing skills are required. Experience in the computational biology/bioinformatics is a plus.

        Please contact Dr. Litvak for additional details.


        selected publications
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        1. Schoggins JW, MacDuff DA, Imanaka N, Gainey MD, Shrestha B, Eitson JL, Mar KB, Richardson RB, Ratushny AV, Litvak V, Dabelic R, Manicassamy B, Aitchison JD, Aderem A, Elliott RM, García-Sastre A, Racaniello V, Snijder EJ, Yokoyama WM, Diamond MS, Virgin HW, Rice CM. Corrigendum: Pan-viral specificity of IFN-induced genes reveals new roles for cGAS in innate immunity. Nature. 2015 Sep 3; 525(7567):144.
          View in: PubMed
        2. Cronk JC, Derecki NC, Ji E, Xu Y, Lampano AE, Smirnov I, Baker W, Norris GT, Marin I, Coddington N, Wolf Y, Turner SD, Aderem A, Klibanov AL, Harris TH, Jung S, Litvak V, Kipnis J. Methyl-CpG Binding Protein 2 Regulates Microglia and Macrophage Gene Expression in Response to Inflammatory Stimuli. Immunity. 2015 Apr 21; 42(4):679-91.
          View in: PubMed
        3. Schliehe C, Flynn EK, Vilagos B, Richson U, Swaminathan S, Bosnjak B, Bauer L, Kandasamy RK, Griesshammer IM, Kosack L, Schmitz F, Litvak V, Sissons J, Lercher A, Bhattacharya A, Khamina K, Trivett AL, Tessarollo L, Mesteri I, Hladik A, Merkler D, Kubicek S, Knapp S, Epstein MM, Symer DE, Aderem A, Bergthaler A. The methyltransferase Setdb2 mediates virus-induced susceptibility to bacterial superinfection. Nat Immunol. 2015 Jan; 16(1):67-74.
          View in: PubMed
        4. Yu L, Croze E, Yamaguchi KD, Tran T, Reder AT, Litvak V, Volkert MR. Induction of a unique isoform of the NCOA7 oxidation resistance gene by interferon ß-1b. J Interferon Cytokine Res. 2015 Mar; 35(3):186-99.
          View in: PubMed
        5. Schoggins JW, MacDuff DA, Imanaka N, Gainey MD, Shrestha B, Eitson JL, Mar KB, Richardson RB, Ratushny AV, Litvak V, Dabelic R, Manicassamy B, Aitchison JD, Aderem A, Elliott RM, García-Sastre A, Racaniello V, Snijder EJ, Yokoyama WM, Diamond MS, Virgin HW, Rice CM. Pan-viral specificity of IFN-induced genes reveals new roles for cGAS in innate immunity. Nature. 2014 Jan 30; 505(7485):691-5.
          View in: PubMed
        6. Litvak V, Ratushny AV, Lampano AE, Schmitz F, Huang AC, Raman A, Rust AG, Bergthaler A, Aitchison JD, Aderem A. A FOXO3-IRF7 gene regulatory circuit limits inflammatory sequelae of antiviral responses. Nature. 2012 Oct 18; 490(7420):421-5.
          View in: PubMed
        7. Ramsey SA, Knijnenburg TA, Kennedy KA, Zak DE, Gilchrist M, Gold ES, Johnson CD, Lampano AE, Litvak V, Navarro G, Stolyar T, Aderem A, Shmulevich I. Genome-wide histone acetylation data improve prediction of mammalian transcription factor binding sites. Bioinformatics. 2010 Sep 1; 26(17):2071-5.
          View in: PubMed
        8. Litvak V, Ramsey SA, Rust AG, Zak DE, Kennedy KA, Lampano AE, Nykter M, Shmulevich I, Aderem A. Function of C/EBPdelta in a regulatory circuit that discriminates between transient and persistent TLR4-induced signals. Nat Immunol. 2009 Apr; 10(4):437-43.
          View in: PubMed
        9. Ramsey SA, Klemm SL, Zak DE, Kennedy KA, Thorsson V, Li B, Gilchrist M, Gold ES, Johnson CD, Litvak V, Navarro G, Roach JC, Rosenberger CM, Rust AG, Yudkovsky N, Aderem A, Shmulevich I. Uncovering a macrophage transcriptional program by integrating evidence from motif scanning and expression dynamics. PLoS Comput Biol. 2008 Mar; 4(3):e1000021.
          View in: PubMed
        10. Litvak V, Dahan N, Ramachandran S, Sabanay H, Lev S. Maintenance of the diacylglycerol level in the Golgi apparatus by the Nir2 protein is critical for Golgi secretory function. Nat Cell Biol. 2005 Mar; 7(3):225-34.
          View in: PubMed
        11. Rolls A, Avidan H, Cahalon L, Schori H, Bakalash S, Litvak V, Lev S, Lider O, Schwartz M. A disaccharide derived from chondroitin sulphate proteoglycan promotes central nervous system repair in rats and mice. Eur J Neurosci. 2004 Oct; 20(8):1973-83.
          View in: PubMed
        12. Litvak V, Argov R, Dahan N, Ramachandran S, Amarilio R, Shainskaya A, Lev S. Mitotic phosphorylation of the peripheral Golgi protein Nir2 by Cdk1 provides a docking mechanism for Plk1 and affects cytokinesis completion. Mol Cell. 2004 May 7; 14(3):319-30.
          View in: PubMed
        13. Rubin C, Litvak V, Medvedovsky H, Zwang Y, Lev S, Yarden Y. Sprouty fine-tunes EGF signaling through interlinked positive and negative feedback loops. Curr Biol. 2003 Feb 18; 13(4):297-307.
          View in: PubMed
        14. Litvak V, Shaul YD, Shulewitz M, Amarilio R, Carmon S, Lev S. Targeting of Nir2 to lipid droplets is regulated by a specific threonine residue within its PI-transfer domain. Curr Biol. 2002 Sep 3; 12(17):1513-8.
          View in: PubMed
        15. Litvak V, Tian D, Carmon S, Lev S. Nir2, a human homolog of Drosophila melanogaster retinal degeneration B protein, is essential for cytokinesis. Mol Cell Biol. 2002 Jul; 22(14):5064-75.
          View in: PubMed
        16. Tian D, Litvak V, Toledo-Rodriguez M, Carmon S, Lev S. Nir2, a novel regulator of cell morphogenesis. Mol Cell Biol. 2002 Apr; 22(8):2650-62.
          View in: PubMed
        17. Litvak V, Tian D, Shaul YD, Lev S. Targeting of PYK2 to focal adhesions as a cellular mechanism for convergence between integrins and G protein-coupled receptor signaling cascades. J Biol Chem. 2000 Oct 20; 275(42):32736-46.
          View in: PubMed
        18. Tian D, Litvak V, Lev S. Cerebral ischemia and seizures induce tyrosine phosphorylation of PYK2 in neurons and microglial cells. J Neurosci. 2000 Sep 1; 20(17):6478-87.
          View in: PubMed
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