Jeffrey L. Browning, PhD

Research Professor, Virology, Immunology & Microbiology

Jeffrey Browning
72 E. Concord St Instructional (L)


My interests focus on understanding how the immune system interacts with stromal elements to form the specialized structures that orchestrate immunological encounters in lymphoid organs. On a different plane, the barriers to effective quantitation of disease are formidable in some autoimmune diseases especially those with considerable unmet need such as lupus and scleroderma. I am interested in bringing new views onto the human immune system to improve clinical studies.

Mesenchymal cell differentiation pathways are intimately interwoven with pathological processes e.g. compromised vascular integrity, aberrant tissue remodeling and fibrosis and tumor-stromal interactions. In lymphoid organs, the lymphotoxin pathway, a TNF family member, is one mechanism by which both innate and adaptive lymphoid cells communicate with their stromal microenvironments. The maintenance of a differentiated follicular dendritic cell network to scaffold the B cell follicle is a well-studied example of this communication. More recently, it is clear that another network, the fibroblastoid reticular cell network, is a differentiated form of mural cells, e.g. pericytes or vascular smooth muscle cells. The precise role of the lymphotoxin pathway in controlling this structure is an area of investigation. As lymph nodes can undergo massive expansion in response to danger following by involution, they form an intriguing model of physiological tissue remodeling. Using this foundation, we have been studying the stromal underpinnings of the perivascular adventitial compartment. this compartment is considered crucial to harbor stem cells, tissue resident leucocytes and sense and initiate repair/remodelling efforts after injury. Human skin has provided an excellent tool to observe these stromal perivascular networks.

Other Positions

  • Research Professor, Rheumatology, Medicine, Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine
  • Member, Arthritis & Autoimmune Diseases Research Center, Boston University
  • Graduate Faculty (Primary Mentor of Grad Students), Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine, Graduate Medical Sciences


  • University of Wisconsin Madison, PhD
  • Michigan State University, BS

Classes Taught

  • GMSMI713


  • Published on 1/19/2023

    Browning JL, Bhawan J, Tseng A, Crossland N, Bujor AM, Akassoglou K, Assassi S, Skaug B, Ho J. Extensive and Persistent Extravascular Dermal Fibrin Deposition Characterizes Systemic Sclerosis. bioRxiv. 2023 Jan 19. PMID: 36711912.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 5/4/2022

    Nayar S, Pontarini E, Campos J, Berardicurti O, Smith CG, Asam S, Gardner DH, Colafrancesco S, Lucchesi D, Coleby R, Chung MM, Iannizzotto V, Hunter K, Bowman SJ, Carlesso G, Herbst R, McGettrick HM, Browning J, Buckley CD, Fisher BA, Bombardieri M, Barone F. Immunofibroblasts regulate LTa3 expression in tertiary lymphoid structures in a pathway dependent on ICOS/ICOSL interaction. Commun Biol. 2022 May 04; 5(1):413. PMID: 35508704.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 8/1/2021

    Gommerman JL, Browning JL. Queen's Gambit: B Cell to Follicle. J Immunol. 2021 08 01; 207(3):753-754. PMID: 34321285.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 6/1/2021

    Barker KA, Etesami NS, Shenoy AT, Arafa EI, Lyon de Ana C, Smith NM, Martin IM, Goltry WN, Barron AM, Browning JL, Kathuria H, Belkina AC, Guillon A, Zhong X, Crossland NA, Jones MR, Quinton LJ, Mizgerd JP. Lung-resident memory B cells protect against bacterial pneumonia. J Clin Invest. 2021 06 01; 131(11). PMID: 34060477.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 11/5/2020

    Wanner-Seleznik GM, Reding T, Chen R, Gupta AK, Lenggenhager D, Browning J, Segerer S, Heikenwalder M, Graf R. Amelioration of Murine Autoimmune Pancreatitis by Targeted LTßR Inhibition and Anti-CD20 Treatment. Immunohorizons. 2020 11 05; 4(11):688-700. PMID: 33154038.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 11/25/2019

    Skaug B, Khanna D, Swindell WR, Hinchcliff ME, Frech TM, Steen VD, Hant FN, Gordon JK, Shah AA, Zhu L, Zheng WJ, Browning JL, Barron AMS, Wu M, Visvanathan S, Baum P, Franks JM, Whitfield ML, Shanmugam VK, Domsic RT, Castelino FV, Bernstein EJ, Wareing N, Lyons MA, Ying J, Charles J, Mayes MD, Assassi S. Global skin gene expression analysis of early diffuse cutaneous systemic sclerosis shows a prominent innate and adaptive inflammatory profile. Ann Rheum Dis. 2020 03; 79(3):379-386. PMID: 31767698.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 1/1/2019

    Ho JD, Chung HJ, Ms Barron A, Ho DA, Sahni D, Browning JL, Bhawan J. Extensive CD34-to-CD90 Fibroblast Transition Defines Regions of Cutaneous Reparative, Hypertrophic, and Keloidal Scarring. Am J Dermatopathol. 2019 Jan; 41(1):16-28. PMID: 30320623.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 12/3/2018

    Barron AMS, Mantero JC, Ho JD, Nazari B, Horback KL, Bhawan J, Lafyatis R, Lam C, Browning JL. Perivascular Adventitial Fibroblast Specialization Accompanies T Cell Retention in the Inflamed Human Dermis. J Immunol. 2019 01 01; 202(1):56-68. PMID: 30510068.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 7/18/2018

    St Clair EW, Baer AN, Wei C, Noaiseh G, Parke A, Coca A, Utset TO, Genovese MC, Wallace DJ, McNamara J, Boyle K, Keyes-Elstein L, Browning JL, Franchimont N, Smith K, Guthridge JM, Sanz I, James JA. Clinical Efficacy and Safety of Baminercept, a Lymphotoxin ß Receptor Fusion Protein, in Primary Sjögren's Syndrome: Results From a Phase II Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2018 09; 70(9):1470-1480. PMID: 29604186.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 2/2/2017

    Grzegorzewska AP, Seta F, Han R, Czajka CA, Makino K, Stawski L, Isenberg JS, Browning JL, Trojanowska M. Dimethyl Fumarate ameliorates pulmonary arterial hypertension and lung fibrosis by targeting multiple pathways. Sci Rep. 2017 02 02; 7:41605. PMID: 28150703.

    Read at: PubMed

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