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Andrea Lynn Cox, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, Medical Scientist Training Program
Professor of Medicine
Languages: English, French
Expertise: Hepatitis B (HBV), Hepatitis C (HCV), Hepatitis, Acute Viral, Infectious Disease
Research Interests: Viral Immunology; Virus; Protective immunity; Hepatitis C virus; T cell; Vaccine; Immunotherapy
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Johns Hopkins Medicine - Green Spring Station
Appointment Phone: 443-997-1900
Green Spring Station
10751 Falls Road
Falls Concourse Suite 412
Lutherville, MD 21093 map
Dr. Andrea L. Cox is a professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She holds joint appointments in oncology and, at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in molecular microbiology and immunology. She is an internationally recognized leader in studies of the host immune response to chronic viral infections, including HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C (HCV). Dr. Cox serves as the director of the Medical Scientist Training Program.
Dr. Cox earned her Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Virginia, where she worked on the characterization of peptide T cell antigens. She then earned her M.D. and completed internal medicine residency and infectious disease fellowship training at Johns Hopkins.
She leads the largest prospective cohort study of acute HCV infection designed to enable detailed molecular analysis of HCV transmission, host immune responses and virus sequence evolution. She is the principal investigator on the first prophylactic HCV vaccine trial in individuals at risk of HCV infection. In addition to her research on chronic viral infections, Dr. Cox is actively involved in clinical care of patients with HCV, HIV and hepatitis B infection.
A teacher, advisor and mentor of physician-scientists, Dr. Cox is a faculty member in the cellular and molecular medicine and the immunology graduate programs at the School of Medicine. Dr. Cox also serves as the faculty advisor for the Association of Women Student MD-PhDs.
- Director, Medical Scientist Training Program
- Professor of Medicine
- Professor of Oncology
- MD, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (1998)
- Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Infectious Diseases (2000)
- Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Infectious Diseases (2003)
- American Board of Internal Medicine / Infectious Disease (2004)
Research & Publications
Dr. Cox’s laboratory investigates the host immune response to chronic human viral infections, particularly HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV). HCV infects nearly 200 million people worldwide, resulting in chronic infection in about 75% of cases. They examine the role of the immune response in clearance of HCV upon exposure to this virus by studying responses to HCV from the earliest phases of infection through years following infection in a longitudinal, prospective cohort of people at risk of HCV infection. This allows a comparison of the innate, humoral and cellular immune responses to infection with clearance versus persistence.
They have demonstrated that spontaneous control of HCV does not uniformly generate sterilizing immunity, but reinfection is associated with a reduction in the magnitude and duration of viremia (compared with the initial infection), broadened cellular immune responses and generation of cross-reactive humoral responses. These findings are consistent with development of adaptive immunity that is not sterilizing but protects against chronic disease.
To identify mechanisms of protective immunity against HCV infection and improve prophylactic HCV vaccine design, they are determining the cellular and humoral responses associated with repeated HCV control. A significant barrier to the development of an HCV vaccine is that HCV is a highly diverse virus. The laboratory has also developed and evaluated methods of HCV vaccine design that may overcome this diversity and stimulate an effective immune response.
Lab Website: Andrea Cox Lab
Cox AL, Skipper J, Chen Y, Henderson RA, Darrow TL, Shabanowitz J, Engelhard VH, Hunt DF, Slingluff CL Jr.: Identification of a peptide recognized by five melanoma-specific human cytotoxic T cell lines. Science 1994 April 29 264 (5159): 716-719
Cox A, Mosbruger T, Mao Q, Liu Z, Wang X-H, Yang H-C, Sidney J, Sette A, Pardoll D, Thomas D, Ray R.; Cellular Immune Selection with Hepatitis C Virus Persistence in Humans, The Journal of Experimental Medicine 2005 201: 1741-1752.
Rutebemberwa A, Ray SC, Astemborski J, Levine J, Liu L, Dowd K, Clute S, Wang C, Korman A, Sette A, Sidney J, Pardoll D, Cox A. High Programmed Death-1 levels on HCV specific T cells during acute infection are associated with viral persistence and require preservation of cognate antigen during chronic infection, Journal of Immunology, 2008, 181: 8215– 8225.
Osburn W, Fisher B., Dowd K, Urban G, Liu L, Ray S, Thomas D, and Cox A. Spontaneous control of primary hepatitis C virus infection and immunity against persistent reinfection. Gastroenterology 2010 Jan; 138(1):315-24.
Chattergoon M, Latanich R, Quinn J, Winter M, Buckheit R, Blankson J, Pardoll D, Cox AL., HIV and HCV activate the inflammasome in monocytes and macrophages via endosomal Toll-like receptors without induction of Type 1 interferon. PLoS Pathogens 2014 May 01;10(5): e1004082
Activities & Honors
- Member of The American Society for Clinical Investigation, 2013
- Career Development Award, Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center
- The Infectious Disease Society of America
An organization that represents physicians, scientists and other health care professionals who specialize in infectious diseases.
- The American Association for the Study of Liver Disease
An organization of scientists and health care professionals committed to preventing and curing liver disease
- The American Association of Immunologists
An association of scientists dedicated to advancing the knowledge of immunology and its related disciplines
- Faculty Advisory Board, Association of Women Student MD-PhDs, Johns Hopkins, Baltimore, MD