IanThis blog is intended to be a place for commentary on immunology, virology, and random other stuff that catches my eye. It is not, and I can’t emphasize this enough, in any way official. I usually try to avoid any observations that may be work-related, but if one slips through, it’s just what I happened to type some time late at night; it may not even be my own opinion any more, let alone that of my employers.

My research interests are in virology and immunology — especially viral evolution, antiviral immunity, the mechanisms by which viruses and cancers evade the immune system, the cell biology of antigen presentation, and autoimmune disease. At present I’m the team leader for the Molecular Virology and Vaccines team in the Immunology and Pathogenesis Branch of the Influenza division of the CDC, but please note once again: This blog is entirely my personal opinion. Most of it was written long before I joined the CDC, I don’t speak for them here, they don’t endorse anything here.

Until mid-2010 I was an assistant professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at Michigan State University and I am still an adjunct faculty member there. Before that I was an assistant professor at University of Massachusetts Medical School, before that I was a research fellow at Harvard. If you go far enough back I was a veterinarian with about 7 years in practice.

My other blog is for personal and family life. I have a Twitter account that has very little useful information, and a web page that has even less.

My publications (if I remember to keep them updated).

Why is this blog called “Mystery Rays from Outer Space”? For years “mystery rays from outer space” has been my explanation for anything that seems inexplicable — which covers much of immunology and virology. (I think I originally saw that as Dave Barry’s explanation for Etch-a-Sketch.)