Kevin B. Urdahl, MD, PhD

Kevin B. Urdahl, MD, PhD

Infectious Disease

On staff since November 2003

Academic Title: Assistant Professor, Pediatrics

Research Center: Center for Global Infectious Disease Research

    • Curtis MM, Rowell E, Shafiani S, Negash A, Urdahl KB, Wilson CB, Way SS
      Fidelity of pathogen-specific CD4+ T cells to the Th1 lineage is controlled by exogenous cytokines, interferon-gamma expression, and pathogen lifestyle.
      20709293 Cell host & microbe , 2010 Aug. 19 : 163-73
    • Shafiani S, Tucker-Heard G, Kariyone A, Takatsu K, Urdahl KB
      Pathogen-specific regulatory T cells delay the arrival of effector T cells in the lung during early tuberculosis.
      20547826 The Journal of experimental medicine , 2010 July 5 : 1409-20
    • Koch MA, Tucker-Heard G, Perdue NR, Killebrew JR, Urdahl KB, Campbell DJ
      The transcription factor T-bet controls regulatory T cell homeostasis and function during type 1 inflammation.
      19412181 Nature immunology , 2009 June : 595-602
    • Scott-Browne JP, Shafiani S, Tucker-Heard G, Ishida-Tsubota K, Fontenot JD, Rudensky AY, Bevan MJ, Urdahl KB
      Expansion and function of Foxp3-expressing T regulatory cells during tuberculosis.
      17709423 The Journal of experimental medicine , 2007 Sept. 3 : 2159-69
    • Urdahl KB, Liggitt D, Bevan MJ
      CD8+ T cells accumulate in the lungs of Mycobacterium tuberculosis-infected Kb-/-Db-/- mice, but provide minimal protection.
      12574368 Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950) , 2003 Feb. 15 : 1987-94
    • Urdahl KB, Sun JC, Bevan MJ
      Positive selection of MHC class Ib-restricted CD8(+) T cells on hematopoietic cells.
      12089507 Nature immunology , 2002 Aug. : 772-9


Medical/Professional School

University of Minnesota, Minneapolis


Pediatrics, University of Washington, Seattle


Pediatric Infectious Disease, University of Washington, Seattle

Clinical Interests

Tuberculosis; Protective immunity against tuberculosis; Tuberculosis vaccines

Research Description

My laboratory is applying recently-developed immunologic tools to the study of tuberculosis in order to gain a better understanding of T lymphocyte-mediated mechanisms that promote protection against tuberculosis and also mechanisms that suppress immunity and help facilitate persistence of the pathogen. The overall goal of this research is to identify strategies that could contribute to the development of an effective vaccine.

Recently, my laboratory defined a role for a suppressive subset of T lymphocytes that dampens immunity and prevents the immune system from effectively eradicating the bacteria that causes tuberculosis.

Research Focus Area

Host: Pathogen Interaction