Barbara K. Felber, Ph.D.

Barbara K. Felber, Ph.D.

  • Center for Cancer Research
  • National Cancer Institute
  • Building 535, Room 209
  • Frederick, MD 21702-1201
  • 301-846-5159
  • 301-693-8140
  • 301-846-7146
Vaccine Branch


Our research focuses on (i) improving nucleic acid-based vaccine technology to make it a rapid, safe, and effective vaccine platform for both as preventive and immunotherapeutic approaches against AIDS, and against cancer and other indications; (ii) studying the gene expression, function and preclinical and clinical applications of selected cytokines and other immunomodulatory molecules relevant for cancer in mouse models and AIDS immunotherapy in  the macaque model; (iii) addressing the problem of viral variability, to maximize immunologic breadth and to induce protective immune responses, against a selection of the most conserved epitopes from different clades of HIV; (iv) understanding the immunological parameters leading to potent protective humoral responses induce by a combination of simultaneous vaccination DNA+Protein vaccination; (v) characterizing adaptive and innate immune responses in SARS-CoV2 vaccinated naive persons and cancer patients.

Areas of Expertise

1) human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) 2) cancer models 3) cytokine 4) vaccine 5) immunology 6) gene expression


Selected Key Publications

HIV vaccine: better to start together?

Felber BK, Pavlakis GN
Lancet HIV. 6(11): e724-e725, 2019. [ Journal Article ]

A new step towards an HIV/AIDS vaccine

Pavlakis GN, Felber BK
Lancet. 392(10143): 192-4, 2018. [ Journal Article ]

HIV vaccine candidate activation of hypoxia and the inflammasome in CD14+ monocytes is associated with a decreased risk of SIVmac251 acquisition

Vaccari M, Fourati S, Gordon SN, Brown DR, Bissa M, Schifanella L, Silva de Castro I, Doster MN, Galli V, Omsland M, Fujikawa D, Gorini G, Liyanage NPM, Trinh HV, McKinnon KM, Foulds KE, Keele BF, Roederer M, Koup RA, Shen X, Tomaras GD, Wong MP, Munoz KJ, Gach JS, Forthal DN, Montefiori DC, Venzon DJ, Felber BK, Rosati M, Pavlakis GN, Rao M, Sekaly RP, Franchini G
Nat Med. 24(6): 847-56, 2018. [ Journal Article ]

Treatment with native heterodimeric IL-15 increases cytotoxic lymphocytes and reduces SHIV RNA in lymph nodes

Watson DC, Moysi E, Valentin A, Bergamaschi C, Devasundaram S, Fortis SP, Bear J, Chertova E, Bess J Jr, Sowder R, Venzon DJ, Deleage C, Estes JD, Lifson JD, Petrovas C, Felber BK, Pavlakis GN
PLoS Pathog. 14(2): e0610902, 2018. [ Journal Article ]

Heterodimeric IL15 Treatment Enhances Tumor Infiltration, Persistence, and Effector Functions of Adoptively Transferred Tumor-specific T Cells in the Absence of Lymphodepletion

Ng SSM, Nagy BA, Jensen SM, Hu X, Alicea C, Fox BA, Felber BK, Bergamaschi C, Pavlakis GN
Clin Cancer Res. 23(11): 2817-30, 2017. [ Journal Article ]

Job Vacancies

Position Degree Required Contact Name Contact Email
Post-doctoral Fellow - Nucleic acid vaccine, immunology, cancer immunotherapy Ph.D. or equivalent Barbara K. Felber, Ph.D.


Biological Laboratory Technician
Jenifer Bear, B.A.
Robert T. Burns, B.S.
Postdoctoral Fellow (Visiting)
Santhi Devasundaram, Ph.D.
Terry Jones
Program Specialist
Terry Jones
Postbaccalaureate Fellow
Amirah J. Ullah, B.S.
Margherita Rosati, Ph.D.
Predoctoral Fellow (Visiting)
Vasiliki Stravokefalou, B.S., M.S.
Scientist I (Contr.)
Sevasti Karaliota, Ph.D.