Rupali Das is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physiology. Her research focuses on how invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells recognize and respond to malignant or infected cells.
The Das Lab examines signaling mechanisms that regulating the function of conventional and innate type T cells. Her laboratory combines in vitro approaches with live animal modeling to map the regulatory circuits that specify immune cell fate and function and coordinate protective anti-tumor immune responses. Along these same lines, the lab uses innovative approaches to direct iNKT cells to the site of cancers in a tumor antigen-specific yet CD1d-independent manner. This research contributes to an understanding of iNKT cell biology and will help identify how the cytotoxic function of these cells could be enhanced to augment host immunity to cancer.