After earning my medical degree in Budapest, Hungary, I completed an extensive post-doctoral training at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester and at Yale Medical School in New Haven. In 1997 I received an EMBO fellowship that allowed me continue my studies at the Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam. In 2000 I was appointed as Assistant professor on the faculty of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Maryland Baltimore. I conducted independently funded research supported by the National Institute of Health and other agencies, taught at the Medical School and Graduate School courses and trained PhD students and post-doctoral fellows.
In 2009 I became a full member of the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center and began to serve as Director of its Flow Cytometry Shared Service. In 2011 I successfully steered the facility to become a full shared service within the NCI funded Cancer Center. In subsequent years the Flow Cytometry Shared Service substantially increased utilization, hired a new employee, doubled its cell sorting capacity and has introduced a number of technological innovations to support cutting edge cancer research at the University of Maryland. In 2015 I was promoted to the Associate professor level on the faculty of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and continue to serve as Director of the NCI-supported Flow Cytometry Shared Service.
During my training and my first nine years of faculty appointment I was primarily interested in the molecular events that control antibody and T-cell receptor gene rearrangement, early T cell development and antibody responses. My studies were carried out at the interface of molecular biology and developmental immunology utilizing a combination of advanced in vitro, biochemical assays and in vivo, transgenic animal models.
Throughout these years I contributed to discoveries that help us better understand the biochemical and cellular mechanisms which shape the antigen receptor repertoire by two major gene recombination processes mediated by the recombination activating gene proteins (RAG-1 and RAG-2) and activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AICDA) enzyme. I also worked in the area of age-associated decline of humoral immune responses and studied the consequences of deficient DNA damage-response pathways that contribute to leukemia and lymphomagenesis. More recently, my interest has focused on helping investigators to advance a variety of research goals with the use of flow cytometry analysis and cell sorting.
Lab Techniques and Equipment:
The Flow Cytometry Shared Service provides full-scale assistance in flow cytometry, including analytical sample acquisition, expert data analysis and cell sorting. The service operates thee analytical instruments, a one-laser/3-color BD FACScan, a two-laser/6-color BD FACSCanto II and a 4-laser/13-color BD LSR II cytometer. The latter instrument is also equipped with high throughput sampler (HTS) attachment that allows sample acquisition from 96-well plates.
Cell sorting services are provided with a two-laser/7-color BD FACSCAria I and a 3-laser/9-color BD FACSAria II sorter. The latter instrument is enclosed in a BioBubble benchtop biosafety enclosure that allows us to performs sorting of human and non-human primate and retro/lenti virus-infected samples at an enhanced BSL-2 biohazard containment. These instruments are high-speed, digital cell sorters with the ability to collect samples 1-4 way and also support 96-well single cell deposition. Our service also helps with experimental planning and scientific data interpretation and provides training on our analytical instruments.