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Lynda Coughlan, PhD

Academic Title:

Assistant Professor

Primary Appointment:

Microbiology and Immunology

Additional Title:

Secondary Appointment: Center for Vaccine Development and Global Health (CVD)


685 W. Baltimore Street

Phone (Primary):

+1-(410) 706-2536

Phone (Secondary):


Education and Training

BSc Microbiology, University College Cork, Ireland, 2003

MS Virology, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, UK, 2005

PhD Viral Gene Therapy, Barts Cancer Institute, London, UK, 2009

Postdoctoral Training, University of Glasgow, UK, 2009-2012

Postdoctoral Training, University of Oxford, UK, 2012-2017

Postdoctoral Fellowship, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, USA, 2017-2018

Research Track Faculty, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, USA, 2018-2020


The Coughlan laboratory is interested in the development of novel vaccines against respiratory viral pathogens, including influenza virus, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and coronaviruses. We are focused on engineering next-generation, non-replicating adenoviral (Ad) vectors with low seroprevalence in humans as plug and play platforms to elicit broadly cross-protective immune responses against our chosen disease targets. Our research focuses on immunogen design, the use of innovative molecular/genetic adjuvanting approaches for incorporation into Ad vaccines, and in identifying correlates of broad protection by comparing different vaccine platforms head-to-head in animal models. Our research approaches span the production of recombinant proteins as vaccine immunogens/or for serology studies, the production and characterisation of monoclonal antibodies, the investigation of extracellular vesicles for their potential in enhancing vaccine immunogenicity, and in the genetic engineering of optimised Ad vaccine platforms, to identify the most promising vectors. 

Research/Clinical Keywords

Adenoviral vectors, vaccines, influenza virus, RSV, coronavirus, universal vaccines, immunology

Highlighted Publications

Coughlan L, Kremer EJ, Shayakhmetov DM. (2022). Adenovirus-based vaccines – a platform for pandemic preparedness against emerging viral pathogens. Molecular Therapy. Jan 27; DOI: 2022.01.034. PMID: 35092844.

Bliss CM, Freyn AA, Leyva-Grado V, Caniels TG, Nachbagauer R, Sun W, Krammer F, Tan GS, McMahon M, Hill AVS, Palese P, Coughlan L*. (2022). A single-shot adenoviral vaccine provides hemagglutinin stalk-mediated protection against heterosubtypic influenza challenge in mice. Molecular Therapy. Jan 6:S1525-0016(22)00011-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ymthe.2022.01.011. PMID: 34999208.

Coughlan L (2021). Caught in a trap: how pre-clinical studies in laboratory mice exaggerate vaccine responses. Cell Reports Medicine. 2021.100484. Dec 21;12(2):100484. PMID: 35028623.

Guthmiller JJ†, Han J†, Utset HA, Li L, Yu-Ling Lan L, Henry C, Stamper CT, Fernández-Quintero ML, Freyn AW, Amanat F, Stovicek O, Gentles L, Richey ST, de la Torrents Peña A, Rosado V, Dugan HL, Zheng N-Y, Tepora ME, Bitar DJ, Changrob S, Strohmeier S, Huang M, García-Sastre A, Liedl KR, Bloom JD, Nachbagauer R, Palese P, Krammer F, Coughlan L, Ward AB‡, Wilson PC‡. (2021). Broadly neutralizing antibodies target a hemagglutinin anchor epitope. Nature. Dec 23. doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-04356-8. PMID: 34942633.

Amanat F, Strohmeier S, Meade P, Dambrauskas N, Mühlemann B, Smith DJ, Vigdorovich V, Sather N, Coughlan L and Krammer F (2021). Vaccination with SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern protects mice from challenge with wild-type virus. Plos Biology. Dec 16;19(12):e3001384. PMID: 34914685.

Lucas J. Kerstetter, Stephen Buckley, Carly M. Bliss & Lynda Coughlan. (2021). Adenoviral vectors as vaccines for emerging avian influenza viruses. Frontiers in Immunology. Jan 29;11:607333. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2020.607333. PMID: 33633727.

Raveen Rathnasinghe, Shirin Strohmeier, Fatima Amanat, Virginia L Gillespie, Florian Krammer, Adolfo Garcia-Sastre, Lynda Coughlan, Michael Schotsaert, Melissa Uccellini. (2020). Comparison of Transgenic and Adenovirus hACE2 Mouse Models for SARS-CoV-2 Infection. Emerging Microbes and Infections. Dec;9(1):2433-2445. PMID: 33073694

Coughlan, L. (2020). Snatching the crown from SARS-CoV-2. Cell Host & Microbe. Sep 9;28(3):360-363. PMID: 32910919. 

Coughlan, L. Factors which contribute to the immunogenicity of non-replicating adenoviral vectored vaccines. (2020). Frontiers in Immunology. May 19;11:909. PMID: 32508823. 

Bliss CM, Parsons AJ, Nachbagauer R, Hamilton J, Cappuccini F, Ulaszewska M, Webber JP, Clayton A, Hill AV and Coughlan L. (2019). Targeting antigen to extracellular vesicles improves the in vivo immunogenicity of human and non-human adenoviral vectored vaccines. Molecular Therapy: Methods and Clinical Development. Dec 24;16:108-125. PMID: 31934599. 

Coughlan, L and Palese, P. (2018). Overcoming barriers in the path to a universal influenza virus vaccine. Cell Host and Microbe. Jul 11;24(1):18-24. PMID: 30001520.

Coughlan, L, Sridhar S, Payne R, Edmans M, Milicic A, Venkatraman N, Lugonja B, Clifton L, Qi C, McMichael A, Folegatti PM, Lawrie A, Roberts R, De Graaf H, Sukhtankar P, Faust S, Lewis D, Lambe T, Hill AV & Gilbert, S. (2018). Heterologous two-dose vaccination with simian adenovirus and poxvirus vectors elicits long-lasting cellular immunity to influenza virus A in healthy adults. EBioMedicine. Volume 29, March, Pages 146-154. PMID:29519670.





Awards and Affiliations

Graduate Women in Science (GWIS) Fellowship 2017. Title: Investigation and exploitation of exosomes in the development of novel influenza vaccines with improved immunogenicity.

British Medical Association HC Roscoe Prize 2016. Title: Investigation and exploitation of exosomes in the development of novel influenza vaccines with improved immunogenicity.

British Society for Gene and Cell Therapy Achievement Award 2016. Awarded a prize by BSGCT for commitment to public engagement activities on behalf of the society from 2011-2016.

Nuffield Department of Medicine (NDM) University of Oxford Head of Department Public Engagement Prize (Dec 2015). Awarded the annual NDM Head of Department Public Engagement Prize (£200) for commitment to science communication.

British Society for Immunology (BSI) Communicating Immunology Grant 2015. Awarded £1000 to run a Public Engagement Day on Vaccines and Infectious Disease which was held at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.

Grants and Contracts


NIH/NIAID R01AI148369-01A1. Title: Combining Innovative Molecular Adjuvanting Approaches with Novel Adenoviral Vector Delivery to Generate a Universal Influenza Vaccine. Role: Project PI

NIH/NIAID CIVIC Contract 75N93019C00055. Title: Characterization and comparison of broadly cross-reactive hemagglutinin stalk Abs elicited by avian and variant pre-pandemic vaccines: A retrospective serological study of serum samples from VTEU Phase I/II clinical trials. Role: Co-PI with Dr. Kathleen Neuzil.

MPower Seed Grant Challenge. Title: Development of vaccines against emerging avian influenza viruses for use in humans and poultry: A one-health approach to prevent zoonotic virus spillover events and support pandemic preparedness. Role: Co-PI with Dr. Andrew Broadbent, UMCP.

NIH/NIAID Contract HHS-NIH-NIAID-BAA2017. PI: Ernst. Title: Adjuvant development of the TLR4 ligand, BECC438. Role: Sub-contract Co-I.

NIH/NIAID 1R21AI157606-01. PI: Dr. Lynda Coughlan. Title: Exosome-display as a strategy to enhance the immunogenicity of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines based on adenoviral vectors.


Professional Activity

NIAID Study Section Mar 2023: Ad-hoc reviewer for NIAID Study Section Vaccines Against Infectious Disease (VID).

NIAID Study Section, May 2021: NIAID ZAI1 JP-W (J1). Emergency Awards: Notice of Special Interest (NOSI) on Pan-Coronavirus Vaccine Development Program Project (P01).

NIAID Study Section, Dec 2020: NIAID ZAI1 JHM-X (J2). Emergency Awards: Rapid Investigation of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and Coronavirus Disease.

NIH Early Career Reviewer, June 2020: Vaccines for Microbial Diseases (VMD) study section.

Special Issue Editor for MDPI Vaccines 2020: Immune Responses to Influenza Virus Antigens.

Society for General Microbiology (UK) Equality and Diversity Working Group Member (March 2013-January 2015)

British Society for Gene and Cell Therapy (BSGCT) Board Member, 2013-2017

Early Career Representative to BSGCT board, 2010-2013