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Vipin Kumar

Vipin KumarTorreyPinesInstituteCA

Laboratory of Autoimmunity

858.597.3870 - phone
858.597.3804 - fax
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Dr. Kumar’s laboratory has been studying the initiation, progression and regulation of autoimmune diseases. Our research objective is to target regulatory subsets in the development of potential intervention or therapy for autoimmune diseases, such as MS, diabetes, arthritis, lupus, ischemic reperfusion injury, and transplantation.  Our laboratory has discovered two novel T cell subsets that display features of innate lymphocytes: a type II NKT cell subset reactive to a self-glycolipid sulfatide presented by the CD1d molecules and another CD8aa+TCRab+ regulatory T cells that recognize antigens, including TCR-derived peptides in the context of a non-polymorphic Qa-1 MHC molecules. Dr. Kumar’s laboratory has been studying biology and role of these novel lymphocytes in the regulation of autoimmune diseases, transplantation, liver diseases as well as in anti-tumor immunity directed against prostate cancer.

Dr. Kumar is currently one of the leaders in the field of immune regulation of autoimmunity. He has been also teaching honors courses at UCLA and UCSD. He has also served as consultants for a number of biotech and Pharmaceuticals, including, Bayer and ASTRA-ARCUS. He has served on a number of grant review study sections for the National Institutes of Health, Arthritis National Research Foundation, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and has served on several foreign Immunology Organizations. He also reviews for a number of immunology journals, including, Nature Med., J. Exp. Med., J. Clin. Invest. and J. Immunol.


  • Ph.D. 1986. Dept. of Biochemistry, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
  • M.S. 1980. Postgraduate Institute for Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh


  • 1985-1987: Research Fellow, HSDM, Harvard Medical School, Boston
  • 1987-1991: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena
  • 1991-1993: Senior Postdoctoral Scholar, UCLA, Los Angeles
  • 1993-1997: Assistant Research Immunologist, Dept. Microbiology and Molecular Genetics,
    UCLA, Los Angeles
  • 1997-2002: Research Scientist, Division of Immune Regulation, LIAI, San Diego
  • 2002-2003: Associate Member, Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies, San Diego
  • 2003-present: Member, Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies, San Diego

Professional Affiliations

  • Member, American Association of Immunologists
  • Member, American Association for the Advancement of Sciences

Honors and Awards

  • 1971-1973 Merit Scholarship, U.P. Board, India
  • 1973-1975 Merit Scholarship, U.P. Board, India
  • 1975-1978 Merit Scholarship, Kanpur University, India
  • 1980-1985 DST Graduate Fellowship, I. I. Sc., Bangalore, India
  • 1988-1991 Postdoctoral Fellow of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (NMSS), USA
  • 2005 Visiting Professor, National Institute of Neurosciences, Tokyo, Japan.

Selected publications out of 111

  1. Halder, R.C., Aguilera, C., Maricic, I. and Kumar, V. (2007). Type II NK T cell-mediated anergy induction in type I NK T cells prevents inflammatory liver disease. J. Clin. Invest. 117(8):2302-12.
  2. Smith, TRF, Kumar, V. (2008). Revival of CD8+ Treg-mediated suppression. Trends in Immunology. 7:337-342.
  3. Smith, TRF, Tang, X., Maricic, I., Garcia, Z., Fanchiang, S., and Kumar V. (2009). Dendritic cells use endocytic pathway for cross-priming Class Ib MHC-restricted CD8αα+TCRαβ+ T cells with regulatory properties. J. Immunol. 182(11):6959-68.
  4. Arrenberg, P., Halder, R., Maricic, I., Dai, YD., and Kumar, V. (2010). Oligoclonality and innate-like features in the TCR repertoire of type II NKT cells reactive to a beta-linked self-glycolipid. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA. 107(24):10984-9.
  5. Fanchiang, S.S., Cojocaru, R., Othman, M., Khanna, R., Brooks, M.J., Smith, T., Tang, X., Maricic, I., Swaroop, A., and Kumar, V. (2011). Global expression profiling of peripheral Qa-1-restricted CD8αα+ TCRαβ+ regulatory T cells reveals innate-like features: implications for immune regulatory repertoire. Human Immunology. 73(3):214-22, 2012.
  6. Arrenberg, P., Maricic, I., Kumar, V. (2011). Sulfatide-mediated activation of type II natural killer T cells prevents ischemic-reperfusion injury in mice. Gastroenterology. 140(2):646-55.
  7. Girardi, E., Maricic, I., Wang, J., Mac, T.T., Iyer, P., Kumar, V.*, Zajonc, D.M.* (2012). Type II Natural Killer T cells recognize sulfatide self-antigens using features of both innate-like and conventional T cells. Nature Immunology. 13:851-856
  8. Kumar V. NKT cell subsets: promoters and protectors in inflammatory liver disease. J. Hepatology. (2013) 59:618-620.
  9. Mark Read, Paul S. Andrews, Jon Timmis, Richard Williams, Richard Greaves, Huiming Sheng, Mark Coles, Vipin Kumar. (2013) Determining Disease Intervention Strategies using Spatially Resolved Simulations. Plos-One. 8:0.
  10. Kumar V. and Delovitch. Different subsets of NKT cells may vary in their roles in health and disease. Immunology. (2014) Jan 15. 12247


1. Methods and compositions for modulating antigen-specific T cell response: filed at UCLA

2. Sulfatides for treatment of autoimmune disorder Application #11/529, 729, 2006

3. A novel population of regulatory CD8aa+TCRab+ T cells: Filed at TPIMS.