Principal Investigator

Lydia Lynch, PhD

Lydia Lynch received her B.Sc. degree in Cell Biology and Genetics from University College Dublin, Ireland. She received her PhD in Immunology in 2008 from University College Dublin, in the lab of Prof. Cliona O’Farrelly in St. Vincent’s University Hospital.

Lydia received a Newman Fellowship for her early post-doctoral studies with Prof. Donal O’Shea in St. Vincent’s University Hospital, Dublin. Here they established the Immunology and Obesity Lab, which coordinates international, collaborative, translational research in obesity and its complications. Lydia then received the prestigious UNESCO-L’Oreal International Women In Science Fellowship, where she moved to Harvard Medical School to study iNKT cells in adipose tissue in the lab of Mark Exley. In 2009, Lydia received an International Marie Curie Fellowship to continue her postdoctoral studies in immunometabolism, in the labs of Prof. Michael Brenner and Prof. Ulrich von Andrian in Harvard. In 2013, she became a junior faculty member at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. In 2014, Lydia started her independent lab with a joint appointment between the Division of Endocrinology and the Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology, at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Lydia’s lab is interested in the effects of obesity and diet on immune cell functions, particularly innate cells including iNKT cells, NK cells and T cells. The Lynch lab also studies the role of the immune system in the regulation of metabolism and body weight, particularly the local immune system in adipose tissue in mice and humans.


Claire McIntyre, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher:

Project:Understanding the metabolic regulation of IL-17- and IFNγ-producing T cells, with a particular focus on γδ T cells.

Science interests: All things related to gamma-delta T cells

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I love to spend time baking and cooking, also anything involving gin!

Favourite Cell: It has to be gamma delta T cells.

Karen Slattery, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher:

Project: A quest for new immunotherapies for ovarian cancer.

Science Interests: Cancer immunology, metabolism, mitochondria, immunotherapy, innate immunity.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I enjoy scuba diving and hiking around Ireland, playing D&D, cooking new dishes and having a pint in the local pub.

Favourite Cell: All human cells!

Britta Kunkemoeller, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher:

Project: Understanding how obesity and diet alter the tumor immune microenvironment

Science Interests: Obesity and metabolic disease, tumor immunology, endothelial biology

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Hiking, running, snuggling my dog, watching tv crime dramas, traveling to new places and learning new things

Favourite Cell: Foreign-body giant cell
Aaron Douglas, PhD

Postdoctoral Researcher:

Project: Understanding the role of innate lymphocytes in thermosensation, thermoregulation and thermogenesis.

Science Interests: Neuroscience, immunology and everything in between (Neuroimmunology).

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Karate, boxing, gaming, power-lifting, mixology, music- guitar, drums and saxophone player. Previous member of the band Thick as Thieves!

Favourite Cell: Is it cheating if I have three? Gamma delta T cells, TRMP8 Sensory Neurons and most recently Type 3 Innate Lymphoid cells (ILC3s)

Adiba Azad, MD

Postdoctoral Researcher:

Bio: After her BSc in the Physiology Honors Program at McGill University in Canada, Adiba spent a year performing 111 Western Blots in Miami, Florida and promptly swore off an MD PhD degree. She studied medicine at Saint Louis University in St. Louis, Missouri and then pursued her Internal Medicine residency training at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York during which time memories of the scent of Beta-mercaptopurine urged her to go back to the bench. She then moved to the prairies to pursue advanced training in Gastroenterology and Transplant Hepatology/NIH T32 track at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and realized she wanted to combine a career of seeing patients and doing endoscopies with basic science research. After her fellowship ended, she accepted a position as consultant physician in GI and Transplant Hepatology and Staff Physician Scientist a Mayo Clinic and moved to Boston in the Lynch Lab as a Mayo Clinic Foundation Scholar. She will move back to Minnesota sometime in 2024 to resume her faculty position and hopefully (!!) get enough $$$ to start her own very creatively named Azad laboratory.  

Project: Role of MAIT cells in biliary disease.

Science Interests: How unconventional T cells contribute to liver disease pathogenesis. Adiba would LOVE to be the person who introduces T lymphocyte based cell-therapy for chronic biliary disease.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Exercise, food and travel.

Favourite Cell: Adiba is pretty fickle with my feelings for cells.

Katie Healy, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher:

Bio: Katie received a BSc in Physiology and an MSc in Regenerative Medicine from University College Cork and the University of Galway, respectively, in her native Ireland. She completed her PhD in Medical Science at the Karolinska Institute, Sweden in 2022. Her doctoral thesis explored the immunotherapeutic potential of MAIT cells in virus-associated cancers. Katie was awarded a Swedish Research Council International Fellowship to continue her research on human MAIT cell biology at the Lynch Lab.

Project: Characterizing the regulation and functional outcome of MAIT cells in colorectal cancer

Science Interests: Tumor immunology and IL-17 regulation

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Travelling, playing video games, and going to trivia nights with my wonderful lab mates.

Favorite cell: MAIT cells of course!

PhD Students

Barry Scott

PhD Student

Project: Deciphering the phenotype and role of Innate T cells in Solid Tumors. I’m primarily dry lab based (Bioinformatics) and work on datasets including single cell sequencing data. In addition to cancer I’ll also be looking at some obesity datasets. I hope to work with others in the lab on their projects, especially when wet-lab dry-lab interactions are complementary.

Science Interests:After spending 14 years as a quantitative trader I’m finding diving into new topics fascinating. I previously studied Mathematics and I am looking forward to applying Data Science/Stats/Maths to find biological insights. I have a particular interest in Cancer and Immunology

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I love playing 5-a-side soccer, cycling and hanging out with the family including our new baby.

Favourite Cell: It’s early days in my Immunology journey and there are so many to choose from! I’m currently leaning towards gamma delta T cells, you’ve got to love their hybrid Innate/Adaptive skills and the fact that they are primed and ready for action

Brenneth Stevens

PhD Student

Project: IL-17 signaling within the central nervous system.

Science Interests: Neuroimmunology and lipid metabolism.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I enjoy mountain biking, cooking, backpacking, reading, rock climbing, and playing/teaching music.

Favourite Cell: Gamma delta T cells or Astrocytes, depending on the day.

Martin Brennan

PhD Student

Project: High-fat diet induced IL-17 upregulation in the murine gut

Science Interests: T cells, mucosal immunology, microbiota

Interests/Hobbies: Love travelling, cinema/movies, gym and sometimes hiking!

Favourite Cell: gamma delta-17s

John Scanlan

PhD Student

Bio: I studied Industrial Biochemistry in the University of Limerick in Ireland for my undergraduate degree. I then went on to work in a start-up for two years before obtaining an MSc in Artificial Intelligence from University of Limerick. Biology drew me back in and I started in the Lynch lab as PhD student working primarily on scRNA-seq datasets to better understand obesity, weight loss and associated inflammatory pathways!

Project: TNFAIP3 regulation in obesity and weight loss

Science Interests: Immunometabolism, microbiome, scRNA-seq, metabolomics, data science

Interests/Hobbies: Playing and watching sport, playing guitar, history, table quizzes, board games, travelling and going out on the town!

Favourite Cell: NK Cells

Jaclyn Kline

PhD Student

Project: Investigating how biological sex differences in immunometabolism impact disease outcomes

Science Interests: Reproductive immunology, sex differences, adaptive immunity, infectious disease, and immunometabolism of course!

Interests/Hobbies: I really love to dance (all kinds of styles), travel, and be outside. I do a lot of hiking and backpacking, pilates, painting, reading, baking, and puzzles. And I also love fungi, dogs, jellyfish, and plants!

Favourite Cell: All CD4+ cells (especially Tregs)

Masters Students

Maria TY Zhou

Master’s Student

Bio: Hey all I’m from Shanghai, China, and I graduated from University of Southern California with a B.S. in Biology. My previous lab experience on CAR-iNKT cells under Professor Lili Yang piqued my interest in immunology, so I am pursuing a Master’s in Immunology at Harvard Medical School and doing my Master’s thesis at the Lynch Lab. 

Project: Characterizing and investigating lipid metabolism of gdIFN in various tissues. Exploring scRNA-seq data with Cellenics!

Science Interests: Immunometabolism, cancer immunology, immunotherapy

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I love to stay home to annoy my cat, play Party Animals with friends online (but very bad at any video games), or watch kdrama/reality shows. Boston weather and early store hours have made me a completely indoor person 🙂

Favorite Cell: Gamma delta T and iNKT cells!

Marouane El Boujadayni

Master’s Student

Project: Click chemistry approach to study the uptake, localization, and metabolism of lipids in Gamma-delta- and Cd8+ T cells.

Science Interests:  Keywords: Immunometabolism, Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Click Chemistry, Single Cell analysis.

Bio: Within the scientific community of this era, collaboration between research fields is extremely important in order to push the boundaries and make impactful discoveries. With this vision in mind, I started my scientific career with a Bachelor’s in Bio-Pharmaceutical sciences at Leiden University, The Netherlands. This very broad field provided an extremely firm foundation in understanding the fundamentals of chemistry, biology and their application in applied sciences. During this period, I developed a passion for Immunology and Chemistry related research. I was eager to stir my scientific career in such a way that I could develop the skills to become a link between these magnificent fields. Therefore, I started the Master’s Chemistry in Leiden, The Netherlands, (with a major in Chemical Biology) to develop a solid foundation in Organic Chemistry. After a successful internship at the lab of Professor S.I. van Kasteren at Leiden University, where I was able to synthesize click chemistry compliable lipids and validate their use for uptake studies in heterogeneous cell populations, I aim to get more hands-on experience in immunometabolism. I look forward to learn new techniques and collaborate with others on their impressive projects in the lab.

Interests/Hobbies: When the labday is over, I enjoy playing in-and outdoor soccer, running in nature and going to the gym. During the holidays, I love travelling to countries to get to know other cultures and meet new people. However, Scuba-diving during these trips is the best remedie for all the struggles we scienticsts face every day.

Favourite Cell: Gamma-delta T cells and DCs as these serve as the bridge between innate- and adaptive immune responses.

Research Assistants

Ciara Campbell

Research Assistant 

Bio: I completed my BSc. in Human Health and Disease in Trinity College Dublin this summer. During my undergraduate degree I had the opportunity to investigate the role of p300 histone acetyltransferase in the epigenetic modifications induced by short chain fatty acids in macrophages. This project ignited my interest in immunology, especially in relation to the interactions between the immune system and diet/metabolism.

Role: My role is to assist fellow lab members with their projects, perform administrative tasks, and overall help the lab run smoothly. I am eager to gain new skills and knowledge, and hopefully carry out some independent research during my time here.

Science interests: Immunology! More specifically, I am interested in how the function of immune cells can be altered by diet and lifestyle factors, how these alterations manifest, and how they can be targeted in disease states.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I love to travel, explore new places, and generally be outdoors. When I am not outside, I spend my spare time reading, watching movies/shows, and listening to podcasts.

Favourite cell: Macrophages and all T cells!

Past Members/

Interns/Visiting Scholars

Katie O’Brien, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher

Project: Understanding the effects of obesity on immune cell metabolism and function

Science Interests: Immunometabolism, immune cell signalling, NK cells, innate lymphocytes, immunosenescence

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Being outdoors – hiking, running, and playing hockey. Also love trying new foods and making pizza!

Favourite Cell: NK cell
Stephen Cunningham

PhD Student

Project: Metabolic and functional regulation of γδ17 T cells

Science Interests: Immunometabolism, immunotherapeutics, tumor immunology, immune signalling.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Music, graphics, dogs.

Favourite Cell: Gamma delta T cells and NK cells

William Trim, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher.

Project: Characterising human adipose tissue in health and disease.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Playing the guitar and piano, history, travelling and frequenting dimly-lit jazz bars.

Favourite Cell: The many types of adipose tissue macrophages

Cathal Harmon, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher.

Project: Harnessing gamma-delta T cells in anti-tumour immunity: By investigating the heterogeneity of innate lymphocytes in human tumours, this project hopes to identify the most useful subsets for cellular therapy and checkpoint targeting in cancer patients.

Science Interests: Tumour immunology, immunotherapy, tumour microenvironment

Interests/hobbies outside of science: When I’m not in the lab I enjoy travelling, reading, movies and sampling every craft beer and coffee made by mankind.

Favourite Cell: How can you choose just one innate lymphocyte, they all work so well together. NK cells and gamma delta T cells are a personal favourite though.

Amanda Garza, PhD

BWH/HMS Research Faculty, Associate Director, BWH Metabolic Core, Instructor in Medicine/HMS, Associate Biochemist/BWH

Career background: 

PhD from the  Medical College of Virginia/Virginia Commonwealth University

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Hormonal Mechanisms fo Cardiovascular Injury (HMCI)Laboratory at BWH

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I enjoy IPAs, playing soccer, anything outdoors and a well-earned nap.


Frances Smith

Research Assistant

Project: Investigating the effects of lipids on immune cell metabolism and cytotoxic function

Science Interests: Immunometabolism, cancer immunology, cell signalling, immunosenescence

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Hiking, playing soccer, traveling and baking something new every week!

Favourite Cell: Gamma-delta T cells and CD8s

Hannah Prendeville

PhD Student

Project: Throughout my PhD I’ll be investigating the effects of various lipid rich diets on anti-tumour immunity. Specifically, I hope to understand how lipids are used by tumour-infiltrating leukocytes, if they are stored intra-cellularly or used as a fuel source and whether this impacts their pro- or anti-tumourigenic functions.

Science Interests: Immunometabolism, cancer immunology, innate immunity, cell signalling.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Music (violin), concerts, festivals, swimming and I’ve just joined the Trinity Hiking Society so I’ll see how that goes!

Favourite Cell: Tumour associated macrophages (TAMs) and NK cells.

Haim Moore

Master’s Student

Project: Characterizing the innate T cell immune landscape of the colorectal tumor microenvironment

Science Interests: Cancer Immunology, T cells, single cell analysis

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Outside of lab you can find me scuba diving, listening to podcasts, watching sports, or attending pub trivia

Favorite Cell: The resident Gamma Delta (γδ) T cells and Mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells of the human gut!

Joyce Barry

PhD Student

Project: Investigating the expression and function of Granzyme K.

Science Interests: Cancer immunology, immunotherapeutics, immunometabolism, cell signalling and innate immunology.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I enjoy hiking, horseriding, reading and listening to a good podcast.

Favourite Cell: NK cells and CD4+ T cells.

Harry Kane

PhD Student

Project: Single Cell RNA-Seq analysis, iNKT cell biology and cellular metabolism. I also collaborate with many of these other lovely people on various bioinformatics-based projects.

Science Interests: Single Cell RNA-Seq, Bioinformatics, Innate T cells, Immunometabolism.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Kayak Polo, games, tea and jumpers.

Favourite Cell: iNKT cells of course. I also have a soft spot for other innate T cells and classic CD4+ T cells.

Lydia Dyck, PhD

Postdoctoral scientist.

Project: Effects of obesity on the immune regulation of cancer

Science Interests: Cancer immunology and immunotherapy, immune checkpoints, immunometabolism

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Hockey, tag rugby, pub quizzes, traveling

Favourite Cell: CD8 T cell

Carmen Morcelle, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher

Project: Understanding how diet controls epigenetic regulation of immunity in the context of obesity

Science interests: Immunometabolism, epigenetics, cell signaling

Interest/hobbies outside of science: Hiking, swimming, traveling, discovering new restaurants

Favourite Cell: macrophages and NK cells

Áine Ni Scannail

Lab Manager

Role: My role is to help everywhere I can, from tissues to grants! I’ve explored independent research questions as well as experiments to aid the projects of other  lab members and collaborators.

Science interests: All things Neuroscience! Working on neuroimmunology questions in the Lynch lab continues to surprise and fascinate me while outlining the benefits of an interdisciplinary background. 

Interests/hobbies outside of science:  I love hiking for days on end, swimming and all things outdoors. I tend to get overexcited about the effects practises such  fasting and mindfulness have on our mind and well being. 

Favourite cell: I am not one for picking favorites but I do love exploring the interactions of immune cell populations and cytokines within the brain and meninges.

Danielle Duquette

Senior Technician, Lab Manager, PhD student

Project: Why do we have Granzyme K?

Science Interests: All things fish! And imaging immune cells! With a degree in Marine Biology and a masters in zoology, Danielle studied Sex determination in response to Stress in Black Sea Bass (Centropristis striata).

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Outside of managing the lab, Danielle enjoys visiting aquariums all over the country, and crossfit challenges. Also art and making killer Halloween costumes!

Favourite cell: NK cells- bright and dims!

Joey Tilley

Lab Manager

Role: My role is to help with the administration, finances, orderings, equipment set up and maintenance, sample collections and to aid researchers when needed. Making lab life run smoothly for all researchers involved is my main aim.

Background: Immunology, Bioinformatics. Experiences with financial accounts and TCD administration.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Tennis, Floristry and Art (abstracts and animal portraits, facebook @tilleysfamilyart)

Favourite cell: Dendritic Cell

Nelson LaMarche

PhD Student
(Co-mentored with Michael Brenner)

Project: Adipose iNKT cells

Science Interests: Autoimmunity, immune regulation, innate-like T cells, immunometabolism

Interests/hobbies outside of science: When not in the lab, Nelson enjoys wine tasting, yoga, salsa dancing, and anything that has to do with dogs

Favourite Cell: iNKT cell of course, but the Treg is a close second

Roisin Loftus, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher.

Project: The focus of my research is to characterise the mechanisms by which obesity impairs Natural Killer cell metabolism and function. I am interested in the relationship between PPAR transcription factors and obesity in NK cell activation and hope to uncover how lipids suppress Natural Killer cell mTORC1 activity.

Science Interests: Immunometabolism, signal transduction, cytotoxic assays, flow cytometry.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I love to travel, swim in the Irish Sea, hike in the Wicklow mountains and pump iron with my personal trainer Aaron

Favourite Cell: Natural Killer cells of course

Mathilde Raverdeau, PhD

Postdoctoral researcher.

Project: My research lies in identifying how the gamma delta T cells differ and how they each participate in the immune response. I am looking at their phenotypes, metabolism, and I am interested in their function in disease propagation and mitigation.

Science Interests: Anything related to immunology!

Interests/hobbies outside of science: I love hiking, painting and gardening…and cheese and wine (what can you do against your cultural heritage?!)

Favourite Cell: Gamma Delta T cells rock!

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Samuel Carthy

Research Intern 2015

Project: The effects of obesity on NKT cells, in particular gene expression

Science Interests: Genetics, Biomedicine, Conservation Genetics

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Playing the cello, reading and games, both tabletop and computer.

Current position: Medicinal genetics researcher at Genomics Medicine Ireland

Andrew Hogan, PhD

Visiting postdoctoral scientist 2010 and 2015

Project: Investigating the GLP-1/iNKT cell axis

Science Interests: Childhood obesity Immunometabolism & Inflammation

Interests/hobbies outside of science: When Andy is not in the lab, he enjoys competing and teaching kickboxing Bouldering & Long Walks on the Beach. He also runs his own gym providing training for adults and children in Dublin Ireland.

Favourite Cell: MAIT cell

Current position: Co. P.I – National Children’s Research Centre, Ireland

Xavier Michelet, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Project: Study of Natural Killer cell biology and dysfunction during obesity. My research focuses on deciphering the mechanisms by which a lipid rich environment impairs anti-tumor functions of NK cells.

Science Interests: My interest in cell biology brought me to study various applications including development, immunology and recently immunometabolsim. My research focuses on the study of the endo-lysosome pathway at the cellular level and how it impacts the whole organism. I am deeply interested in the lysosome biology that has proven to be more than the ‘cellular incinerator’ but involved in much broader functions such as antigen presentation, secretion, plasma membrane repair, signaling and metabolism. Using my cell biology and immunology skills, I wish to develop a novel niche, which investigates in detail the role of the lysosome and lysosomes related organelles in metabolic disease. The ability of the lysosome to sense nutrients and stress within the cell and to trigger key signaling pathways places it at the center of many research fields, particularly in metabolic disease.

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Xavier loves Travel, History, Woodworking, Star Wars, and daughter Eleanore!

Favourite Cell: Natural Killer cell and Dentritic Cells

Ayano Kohlgruber, PhD

Graduate Student
(Co-mentored with Prof. Michael Brenner)

Project: Understanding the role of gamma delta T cells in adipose tissue biology

Science Interests: All things immunology!

Interests/hobbies outside of science: Outside of Immunology, Ayano enjoys hiking/backpacking, running, bread baking, teaching, labradoodles, and traveling!

Favourite cell: Gamma delta T cell