Irah King

photo of Dr. Irah King: research focus is on how immune cells communicate with their local environment to promote protective immune responses relevant to human disease., with a focus on immunity at barrier sites such as the gut, skin and lung

Position
Associate Professor, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Department of Medicine, McGill University
Canada Research Chair in Barrier Immunity
Director, MI4 Gnotobiotic Animal Research Platform

Research Interests

The focus of our research is to understand how immune cells communicate with their local environment to promote protective immune responses relevant to human disease. We are particularly interested in immunity at barrier sites such as the gut, skin and lung as these tissues face the complex task of maintaining homeostasis while directly interacting with the outside world.

Ongoing studies include:

  1. The molecular mechanisms of CD4+ T cell differentiation following intestinal helminth infection.
  2. The gut-lung axis in the context of infectious disease
  3. Innate immune mechanisms of disease tolerance during intestinal helminth infection.
  4. Regulation of skin-resident IL-17-producing T cells in the context of psoriatic-like inflammation.
  5. The impact of the microbiome on infection and inflammatory bowel diseases.

Check out this link to find out why parasites may be critical for human evolution!

This link describes how helminths can affect human fertility.

Featured Publications

Training the metaorganism: the microbial counterpart

King IL, Divangahi M. Cell. 2021 Jan;184(3):574-576.

NK cell recruitment limits tissue damage during an enteric helminth infection

Gentile ME, Li Y, Robertson A, Shah K, Fontes G, Kaufmann E, Polese B, Khan N, Parisien M, Munter HM, Mandl JN, Diatchenko L, Divangahi M, King IL. Mucosal Immunol. 2020 Mar;13(2):357-370.

CD109 Restrains Activation of Cutaneous IL-17-Producing γδ T Cells by Commensal Microbiota

Zhang H, Carnevale G, Polese B, Simard M, Thurairajah B, Khan N, Gentile ME, Fontes G, Vinh DC, Pouliot R and King IL. Cell Reports. 2019 Oct 8;29(2):391-405.

Intestinal dysbiosis compromises alveolar macrophage immunity to Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Khan N, Mendonca L, Dhariwal A, Fontes G, Menzies D, Xia J, Divangahi M, King IL. Mucosal Immunol. 2019 May;12(3):772-783.

T follicular helper cell-derived IL-4 is required for IgE production during intestinal helminth infection

Meli AP, Fontes G, Leung Soo C, King IL. J Immunol. 2017 Jul 1;199(1):244-252.

The integrin LFA-1 Controls T follicular Helper Cell Generation and Maintenance

Meli AP, Fontés G, Avery DT, Leddon SA, Tam M, Elliot M, Ballesteros-Tato A, Miller J, Stevenson MM, Fowell DJ, Tangye SG, King IL. Immunity. 2016 Oct 18;45(4):831-846.

Irah King in the News


Contact Information

Meakins-Christie Laboratories
RI-MUHC, Block E
Office EM2.2232
Lab E02.41264
1001 Decarie Blvd.
Montreal QC H4A 3J1
Canada

Tel: 514-934-1934 Ext. 35260 (lab)
Tel: 514-934-1934 Ext. 76185 (office)
Tel: 514-934-1934 Ext. 76172 (admin)
Fax: 514-933-3962
E-Mail: irah.king [at] mcgill.ca

Education & Training

BA (Psychology), Ohio University, 2000
MSc (Physical Therapy), U Pittsburgh, 2002
PhD (Immunology), U Rochester, 2008
PDF Trudeau Institute, 2012