Dr. Carl June is currently director of translational research at the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, and is an investigator of the Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute. He is a graduate of the Naval Academy in Annapolis, and Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, 1979. He had graduate training in immunology and malaria with Dr. Paul-Henri Lambert at the World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland, from 1978-79, and postdoctoral training in transplantation biology with Dr. E. Donnell Thomas and Dr. John Hansen at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle from 1983 - 1986. He is board certified in internal medicine and medical oncology. He founded the Immune Cell Biology Program and was head of the department of immunology at the Naval Medical Research Institute from 1990 to 1995. He rose to professor in the departments of medicine and cell and molecular biology at the Uniformed Services University for the Health Sciences in Bethesda, MD, before assuming his current position as a tenured professor at the University of Pennsylvania in 1999. He maintains a research laboratory that studies various mechanisms of lymphocyte activation that relate to immune tolerance and adoptive immunotherapy.
Dr. June’s research interests have focused on lymphocyte biology, with a major translational focus on ex vivo T cell engineering for cancer and HIV cell based therapies. His current research involves applying principles of the cellular immune system to develop novel therapies for cancer and chronic infection. His laboratory has been dedicated to develop new forms of T cell based therapies for nearly two decades. His studies discovered several principles of lymphocyte costimulation. Using these basic findings, the laboratory developed a cell culture system that was tested for the first-in-human evaluation of chimeric antigen receptors (CAR) using T cells modified with gamma retroviruses and for immune regeneration in AIDs patients. His team conducted the first clinical evaluations of lentiviruses and zinc finger nucleases as tools to modify T cells, initially in HIV and then in cancer patients with advanced leukemia.