Paolo Casali, MD, is the UT Ashbel Smith Professor and Distinguished Research Professor of Microbiology, Immunology & Molecular Genetics, Professor of Medicine, University of Texas Long School of Medicine, UT Health Science Center, SA, USA. Dr. Casali joined the University of Texas Long School of Medicine as Chairman of the new Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics in 2013, a role that he covered until 2020.
Prior to joining the University of Texas, Dr. Casali served as Professor of Immunology and Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, and Director of the Graduate Program in Immunology at Cornell University Weill Medical College in New York, NY, and, subsequently, as the Donald L Bren Professor of Medicine, Molecular Biology & Biochemistry and (founding) Director of the Institute of Immunology at the University of California Irvine. Dr. Casali is a member of the American Association of Immunologists (AAI) since 1981. He is also an Elected Fellow (2009) of the American Association for Advancement of Science (AAAS). During the last 35 years, Professor Casali has served as Standing Member on multiple NIH Study Sections and Special Emphasis Panels.
The Casali lab continues to focus on the B cell mechanisms underpinning the maturation of T-dependent (CD40) or T-independent (toll-like receptor) antibody and autoantibody responses, that is, Ig locus somatic hypermutation (SHM)/ class-switch DNA recombination (CSR), memory B cell and plasma cell differentiation, and their regulation (please view here for more details). Dr. Casali is credited with the identification of human B-1a and B-1b cells in immunity and autoimmunity as well as the characterization of the antibodies that these B cells make, for which he coined the term “polyreactive” antibodies. He also has made significant contributions to the understanding of the molecular mechanisms of B cell SHM/CSR, with emphasis on central role of AID and translesion DNA polymerases. More recently, the Casali lab has dedicated focused on the epigenetic factors and mechanisms mediating the regulation of such processes.