Anthony Raymond French, MD, PhD
Photo: Anthony R. French



Elected 2014

Dr. French is a pediatric rheumatologist at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. His research is focused on a quantitative understanding of the host innate immune response to viruses. He is particularly interested in natural killer (NK) cell responses during infections with large DNA viruses. Over the last eight years, his work has addressed several questions at the interface between the innate immune system and viral infections, including how NK cell proliferation and homeostasis are controlled, how viruses utilize MHC class I–like homologs (e.g., m157 in murine cytomegalovirus and OMCP in cowpox) to evade NK cells and other innate immune cells, sex differences in innate immune responses, and defects in human NK cell responses to herpesvirus infections. He has developed quantitative mathematical models of cytokine-driven NK cell proliferation on a population level as well as on a more mechanistic cellular level. He is also interested in studying defects in innate immune responses in patients from his clinics and the potential contributions of aberrant NK cell responses to the onset of human autoimmune disorders. He has identified functional NK cell deficits in a subset of patients with unusually recurrent/severe HSV infections and is currently studying NK cell functional responses in new-onset juvenile dermatomyositis and systemic juvenile rheumatoid arthritis patients.