Principal Investigator

Kate Jeffrey   |

Dr. Kate L. Jeffrey is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, an Assistant in Immunology at Massachusetts General Hospital, Faculty of Harvard Immunology, Faculty of Harvard Virology and an associate member of the Broad Institute of MIT & Harvard. Kate grew up in Australia, performed her undergraduate studies (B.Sc, (Honors)) at the University of Melbourne, Australia, and completed her Ph.D. in immunology with Professor Charles Mackay at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, Australia. She then worked as an Immunology editor with Nature Medicine in New York in 2007 before performing her postdoctoral research with Professor Sasha Tarakhovsky at The Rockefeller University in New York focusing on epigenomic regulation of innate immunity and inflammation. Kate is also co-founder of the New York Imagine Science Film Festival in New York City and is a proud mother of two daughters. She started her independent laboratory at MGH/Harvard in 2012.

Postdoctoral Fellows

Hajera Amatullah   |

Hajera joined the lab in October 2016 as a postdoctoral fellow. Hajera received her Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Environmental Sciences from the University of Toronto, Canada followed by a Master of Public Health at the University of Toronto. Her masters work with Dr. Jeremy A. Scott looked at the mechanisms underlying air pollution-induced cardiorespiratory dysfunction in naïve and asthmatic murine models. She then completed her Ph.D. in Physiology at University of Toronto under the supervision of Dr. Claudia dos Santos and her work investigated novel therapeutic targets in sepsis-induced multi organ failure. In the Jeffrey lab, Hajera is understanding the role of an immune-restricted epigenetic reader protein in homeostatic immunity and how its loss in IBD, CLL and MS contributes to disease. She is a recipient of a postdoc fellowship from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). Outside of lab interests: Basketball, Baking and Comics

Pubmed     Linkedin

Fatemeh Adiliaghdam   |

Fatemeh joined the lab in August 2016 as a postdoctoral fellow. Fatemeh obtain her MD from Tehran university of Medical Sciences in Tehran, Iran followed by a Master of Public Health at the same university. She then moved to the US and did her first post doc in the Laboratory of Gastrointerstinal Epithelial Biology in MGH under the supervision of Dr Richard Hodin. Here she examined burn induced gut hyperpermeability in mouse models and how intestinal alkaline phosphatase (IAP) helps to improve gut barrier function in this context. In parallel, she examined how IAP as a regulator of gut barrier and anti-inflammatory enzyme could extend life span in Drosophila and C. elegans in an aging model. In the Jeffrey lab, she is examining host antiviral responses to both pathogenic and symbiotic viruses. Fatemeh hopes to eventually complete her surgical residency in the US and be a physician scientist. Outside of lab interests: Basketball, movie nights, dancing

Graduate Students

Hembly Rivas   |

Hembly is from Saugus, MA. She graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Boston in 2014 with a BS in Biology. Afterwards, she spent two years working in the laboratory of Dr. Marta Gaglia at Tufts School of Medicine studying viral host interactions of Kaposi’s Sarcoma-associated herpesvirus, specifically identifying viral factors that regulate host gene expression during infection. She started pursuing her PhD in the Department of Virology at Harvard School of Medicine in fall 2016 and joined the Jeffrey Lab in summer 2017. She is interested in understanding how resident viruses in the gut contribute to immune homeostasis and disease.

If she’s not in lab, Hembly is likely reading, discovering new places to eat, or traveling.

Isabella Fraschilla   |

Isabella grew up in Georgia and completed a B.S. in Biology in 2014 at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. After her undergraduate studies, she went on to study humoral immunity as a postbaccalaureate fellow at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD and then the Ragon Institute in Cambridge, MA. She is currently a student in the Ph.D. program in Immunology at Harvard University. Since joining the Jeffrey lab in the fall of 2017, she has been interested in how epigenetic reader proteins can regulate transcriptional programs of immune cells in health and disease.

Outside of lab, Isabella enjoys the outdoors, cooking, and learning Italian.




Sreehaas Digumarthi   |

Sreehaas joined the Jeffrey Lab as a high school student during his senior year at the Belmont Hill School. He is currently an undergrad at Northeastern University, where he is working on a Bachelor of Science in Biology.

Outside of the lab, he enjoys traveling, going to concerts, and collecting sneakers.



Rutger Jan Roring

Rutger is a Dutch student who joined the lab in December 2017. He graduated from Radboud University (Nijmegen, The Netherlands) with a B.Sc in Biomedical Sciences. Currently, he is enrolled in the Master’s program of Molecular Mechanisms of Disease, also in Nijmegen. In previous internships, he worked in the lab of Dr. W. Joost Lesterhuis (the University of Western Australia, AU), on the biodistribution of platinum chemotherapeutics; and in the lab of Prof. Dr. Mihai Netea (Radboud University, the Netherlands), where he investigated molecular mediators of trained innate immunity. In the Jeffrey lab, he is investigating innate immune responses towards the intestinal virome. Outside the lab, Rutger enjoys going on roadtrips, playing videogames, and running.


Tahnee Saunders   | Research Technician II (2015-2017)

Tahnee is currently a Ph.D. student in Professor Benjamin Kile’s lab at Monash University in Melbourne under an Australian Postgraduate Award (Australian Research Council).




Stuti Mehta   |    Postdoctoral Fellow (2013-2016)

Stuti is is currently a postdoc in Stuart Orkin’s lab at Boston Children’s Hospital.





D. Alex Cronkite   |    Research Technician (2013-2016)

Alex is currently in the M.D. program at the University of Central Florida.





Megha Basavappa   |    Research Technician (2012-2015)

Megha is currently in the Ph.D. program at U Penn Immunology





Tim Prior   |    Research Technician (2014-2015)

Tim is currently in the M.D./Ph.D. program at Tulane University