Adrian Hayday

Adrian Hayday


  • maydays
    Borough Wing

    United Kingdom

  • 16524

Personal profile

Research interests

As a post-doctoral fellow with Susumu Tonegawa at MIT, I contributed to the molecular cloning and characterisation of translocated c-myc genes in human Burkitt's lymphoma, and to the T cell receptor (TCR) genes. This included the unanticipated identification of the TCR gamma chain, which was followed by the discovery of the hitherto unknown gamma delta T cells. Assuming an independent Faculty position at Yale, I adopted molecular genetic approaches, including the development of key gene knockout and transgenic models, to elucidate gamma delta T cell function and development.

Those studies collectively have illuminated several areas, including:

  • 'beta-selection', a point in development where gamma delta T cell differentiation diverges from the development of most alpha beta T cells.
  • the demonstration that, by contrast to the systemic distribution of diverse alpha beta T cells, gamma delta T cells are disproportionately associated with epithelial tissues, wherein they reside as oligoclonal repertoires of limited diversity.
  • the demonstration that gamma delta cells can promote immunoglobulin synthesis by B cells, but that this is primarily self-reactive. In 1998, I assumed the Professorship in Immunobiology at the King's College School of Medicine on the Guy's Hospital site. Our work has continued to provide insight, including:
  • identification of the role played by the c-myc proto-oncogene in T cell development
  • the demonstration that skin-associated gamma delta T cells protect the skin from potentially pathologic infiltrates of systemic lymphocytes
  • the demonstration that gamma delta T cells are a component of the natural resistance to skin carcinogenesis.
  • the demonstration that the gene expression pattern that best distinguishes gamma delta T cells from most alpha beta T cells is shared with an unusual set of tissue-associated alpha beta T cells that we collectively term unconventional T cells
  • the identification of 'trans-conditioning', a mechanism by which unconventtional T cell differentiation is strongly influenced by alpha beta T cell progenitors.
  • the demonstration that trans-conditioning may also affect the body's balance of effector and regulatory T cells Our current research interests focus on how repertoires of tissue-associated unconventional T cells develop and function, including the identification of novel host-encoded molecules expressed by epithelial cells with which gamma delta T cells interact. Research findings are being applied in the clinic, where we have just completed a proof-of-principle trial of gamma delta T cell therapy in hormone-refractory prostate cancer, in collaboration with F Dieli (Palermo).

Research interests (short)

Genetic approaches to immune system function and development; unconventional T cells and the regulation of tissue inflammation.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, Imperial College London

Award Date: 1 Jan 1982

Bachelor of Arts, University of Cambridge

Award Date: 1 Jan 1978


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