Luc Teyton

     I received my medical training in France and specialized in Rheumatology before investing myself in clinical Immunology at the end of my residency. I practiced and saw patients for more than ten years. To accompany my move into immunology, I decided to do a Ph.D. on the subject at the Pasteur Institute and the University Pierre and Marie Curie in Paris. I came to TSRI as a post-doctoral fellow in 1987 and determined the dual role of the MHC class II associated invariant chain. This work allowed me to become an assistant professor in the department of Immunology. Three years later, when the time came to go back to France as a professor of medicine, my research was focused on the T cell receptor and the molecular mechanisms of T cell activation. Over the span of the next two years, we expressed the first recombinant soluble and secreted ab T cell receptor, crystallized it, and determined its structure alone and in complex with its pMHC ligand. I stayed at TSRI to pursue basic research but miss clinical work dearly. Since that time, our work has been focused on the same topics of interest and we have made important contributions in the structure and function of MHC class II molecules, the presentation and recognition of lipids by the immune system, and the mechanisms that lead to autoimmunity. My scientific interests are all linked to important medical questions and needs such as “What is the molecular basis of the association between HLA and autoimmunity?”, “How to discover new immunosuppressive drugs?”, “How to improve the efficacy of vaccines”, “How to manipulate T cells in vivo for therapeutic purposes?” The long-term intents of our work are to translate some of our basic discoveries to the clinical field of application.
     On the personal side, my interests are focused on people, the arts, and a neo-Epicurean philosophy of life. I dislike vacations and tourism. I am married to Véronique and we have one daughter, Anaïs who goes to college.