Infection, Immunology & Translational Medicine (IITM) Oxford

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Chris Schiering

We ask Chris about his DPhil project and his current postdoctoral fellowship


Chris Schiering

Chris obtained an MSci at the University of Glasgow before joining the IITM programme. As part of his degree he undertook a full year of research in a lab in Milan, Italy. Chris rotated with Fiona Powrie, Chris Newbold and Petros Ligoxygakis before selecting Fiona Powrie to supervise his DPhil project. He completed in 2012.

Chris’ project was very productive. He investigated cytokine networks that contribute to chronic intestinal inflammation with a particular focus on Treg cells and Th17 cells and obtained a first author Nature paper along the way.

He went on to secure a competitive Sir Henry Wellcome fellowship and is working in Gitta Stockinger’s lab at the Francis Crick Institute in London. He is continuing to pursue his interests in mucosal immunology and is currently investigating how Cyp1 monooxygenases regulate aryl hydrocarbon receptor signalling in the intestine.

“[Prior lab experience] will not only help you kick start your DPhil project but will also give you confidence that research is the right path for you”

Obtaining practical research experience in a real research lab environment as an undergraduate is beneficial, says Chris.  “This will not only help you kick start your DPhil project but will also give you confidence that research is the right path for you.”

“It’s very important to choose meaningful rotation projects outside your comfort zone”

Planning ahead and thinking about your future career early in the DPhil is also important, says Chris. With this in mind “It’s very important to choose meaningful rotation projects outside your comfort zone”. Whilst studying it’s also very important to develop a strong connections with fellow DPhil students: “Such a network of peers will prove tremendously helpful in your future careers.”

Publications from IITM:

Krausgruber T, Schiering C*, Adelmann K, Harrison OJ, Chomka A, Pearson C, Ahern PP, Shale M, Oukka M, and Powrie F: T-bet is a key modulator of IL-23-driven pathogenic CD4(+) T cell responses in the intestine. Nature Communications 2016.

Ilott NE, Bollrath J, Danne C, Schiering C, Shale M, Adelmann K, Krausgruber T, Heger A, Sims D, Powrie F: Defining the microbial transcriptional response to colitis through integrated host and microbiome profiling. ISME J 2016.

Harrison OJ, Srinivasan N, Pott J, Schiering C, Krausgruber T, Ilott NE, Maloy KJ: Epithelial-derived IL-18 regulates Th17 cell differentiation and Foxp3(+) Treg cell function in the intestine. Mucosal Immunology 2015.

Griseri T, Arnold IC, Pearson C, Krausgruber T, Schiering C, Franchini F, Schulthess J, McKenzie BS, Crocker PR, Powrie F: Granulocyte Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor-Activated Eosinophils Promote Interleukin-23 Driven Chronic Colitis. Immunity 2015. 

Schiering C, Krausgruber T, Chomka A, Frohlich A, Adelmann K, Wohlfert EA, Pott J, Griseri T, Bollrath J, Hegazy AN, Harrison OJ, Owens BM, Lohning M, Belkaid Y, Fallon PG, Powrie F: The alarmin IL-33 promotes regulatory T-cell function in the intestine. Nature 2014.

Knosp CA, Schiering C, Spence S, Carroll HP, Nel HJ, Osbourn M, Jackson R, Lyubomska O, Malissen B, Ingram R, et al: Regulation of Foxp3+ Inducible Regulatory T Cell Stability by SOCS2. Journal of Immunology 2013.

Shale M, Schiering C and Powrie F: CD4(+) T-cell subsets in intestinal inflammation. Immunological Reviews 2013.

Griseri T, McKenzie BS, Schiering C, and Powrie F: Dysregulated hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell activity promotes interleukin-23-driven chronic intestinal inflammation. Immunity 2012.

Coccia M, Harrison OJ, Schiering C, Asquith MJ, Becher B, Powrie F, Maloy KJ: IL-1β mediates chronic intestinal inflammation by promoting the accumulation of IL-17A secreting innate lymphoid cells and CD4+ Th17 cells. Journal of Experimental Medicine 2012.

Ahern PP, Schiering C*, Buonocore S, McGeachy MJ, Cua DJ, Maloy KJ, Powrie F: Interleukin-23 drives intestinal inflammation through direct activity on T cells. Immunity 2010.

*joint first author