Profile

Marta Bull, PhD

Marta Bull, PhD

Infectious Disease

Academic Title: Research Assistant Professor, Pediatrics

Research Center: Center for Global Infectious Disease Research

  • Marta Bull started her research career at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, where she received her PhD in Immunology. After completing her degree she chose a position at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC) with the HIV Vaccine Trials Network (HVTN) as a Protocol Manager. From here she moved into a post-doctoral fellow at Seattle Children's Research Institute (SCRI) to study HIV genetics and viral dynamics throughout the body.
    My laboratory interests combine my background in HIV immunology and phylogenetic population studies to study how immune responses to chronic co-infections (e.g. herpes simplex two, HSV-2) promotes HIV persistence in the mucosa, and how these responses may pose a barrier to an HIV cure.

  • Award Name Award Description Awarded By Award Date
    Center for AIDS Research New Investigator Award This project aims to define whether immune responses to persistent secondary infections contribute to persistence of HIV DNA reservoirs at mucosal sites, in particular the female uro-genital tract. We propose to measure changes in the antigen specific T cell frequencies, HIV DNA concentrations and HIV diversity at mucosal sites of HSV-2 shedding in HIV- HSV-2 co-infected persons before and after 28 days of self collected samples. Self collected specimens will be assayed by real-time PCR and the number of positive results over total assays will be used to establish HSV shedding rates. This effort should provide insight into how chronic secondary infections alter mucosal HIV populations, and provide insight into basic mechanisms that promote HIV persistence. University of Washington 2013 - 2017
    New Investigator Award Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) 2012
    Research Travel Award Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) 2008
    Childrens Hospital Fellows Research Day Award Oral presentation, "HIV-1 Compartmentalization in the Female Genital Tract" Seattle Children's Research Institute 2006
    Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award University of Washington STD/AIDS Research Training Program 2006 - 2008
    Loan Repayment Award National Institutes of Health (NIH) 2006 - 2008
    • Williams CA, So ID, Bull ME, Samleerat T, Ngo-Giang-Huong N, Frenkel LM, Sirirungsi W.
      Genetic analyses of HIV env associated with uveitis in antiretroviral-naïve individuals
      AIDS, in process , 2017
    • Ticona E, Bull ME, Soria J, Tapia K, Legard J, Styrchak SM, Williams C, Mitchell C, La Rosa A, Rosa AL, Coombs RW, Frenkel LM
      Biomarkers of inflammation in HIV-infected Peruvian men and women before and during suppressive antiretroviral therapy.
      26372272 AIDS (London, England) , 2015 Aug. 24 : 29(13)1617-22 PMCID: PMC4823992
    • Bull ME, Legard J, Tapia K, Sorensen B, Cohn SE, Garcia R, Holte SE, Coombs RW, Hitti JE
      HIV-1 shedding from the female genital tract is associated with increased Th1 cytokines/chemokines that maintain tissue homeostasis and proportions of CD8+FOXP3+ T cells.
      25202922 Journal of acquired immune deficiency syndromes (1999) , 2014 Dec. 1 : 67(4)357-64 PMCID: PMC4213308
    • Bull ME, Heath LM, McKernan-Mullin JL, Kraft KM, Acevedo L, Hitti JE, Cohn SE, Tapia KA, Holte SE, Dragavon JA, Coombs RW, Mullins JI, Frenkel LM
      Human immunodeficiency viruses appear compartmentalized to the female genital tract in cross-sectional analyses but genital lineages do not persist over time.
      23315326 The Journal of infectious diseases , 2013 Apr, : 207(8)1206-15 PMCID: PMC3603533
    • Beck IA, Jang M, McKernan-Mullin J, Bull M, Wagner T, Huang S, Song LY, Nachman S, Krogstad P, Eshleman SH, Wiznia A, Frenkel LM
      Monitoring of HIV type 1 DNA load and drug resistance in peripheral blood mononuclear cells during suppressive antiretroviral therapy does not predict virologic failure.
      22081867 AIDS research and human retroviruses , 2012 Aug. : 28(8)780-8 PMCID: PMC3399556
    • Soria J, Bull M, Mitchell C, La Rosa A, Dross S, Kraft K, Coombs R, Ticona E, Frenkel L
      Transmitted HIV resistance to first-line antiretroviral therapy in Lima, Peru.
      21819256 AIDS research and human retroviruses , 2012 Apr, : 28(4)333-8 PMCID: PMC3316114
    • Gantt S, Carlsson J, Heath L, Bull ME, Shetty AK, Mutsvangwa J, Musingwini G, Woelk G, Zijenah LS, Katzenstein DA, Mullins JI, Frenkel LM
      Genetic analyses of HIV-1 env sequences demonstrate limited compartmentalization in breast milk and suggest viral replication within the breast that increases with mastitis.
      20660189 Journal of virology , 2010 Oct. : 84(20)10812-9 PMCID: PMC2950573
    • Bull M, Learn G, Genowati I, McKernan J, Hitti J, Lockhart D, Tapia K, Holte S, Dragavon J, Coombs R, Mullins J, Frenkel L
      Compartmentalization of HIV-1 within the female genital tract is due to monotypic and low-diversity variants not distinct viral populations.
      19771165 PloS one , 2009 Sept. : 4(9)e7122 PMCID: PMC2741601
    • Bull ME, Learn GH, McElhone S, Hitti J, Lockhart D, Holte S, Dragavon J, Coombs RW, Mullins JI, Frenkel LM
      Monotypic human immunodeficiency virus type 1 genotypes across the uterine cervix and in blood suggest proliferation of cells with provirus.
      19339344 Journal of virology , 2009 June : 83(12)6020-8 PMCID: PMC2687376
    • Bull ME, Learn GH, Mullins JI, Frenkel LM
      Methods used to examine compartmentalization of viral populations between the genital tract and peripheral blood.
      17597465 The Journal of infectious diseases , 2007 Aug. : 196(3)493-4; author reply 494-5
    • Bull M, Lee D, Stucky J, Chiu YL, Rubin A, Horton H, McElrath MJ
      Defining blood processing parameters for optimal detection of cryopreserved antigen-specific responses for HIV vaccine trials.
      17382342 Journal of immunological methods , 2007 Apr, : 322(1-2)57-69 PMCID: PMC1904432
    • Bull ME, Vahlenkamp TW, Dow JL, Collisson EW, Winslow BJ, Phadke AP, Tompkins MB, Tompkins WA
      Spontaneous T cell apoptosis in feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)-infected cats is inhibited by IL2 and anti-B7.1 antibodies.
      15113651 Veterinary immunology and immunopathology , 2004 May : 99(1-2)25-37
    • Vahlenkamp TW, Bull ME, Dow JL, Collisson EW, Winslow BJ, Phadke AP, Tompkins WA, Tompkins MB
      B7+CTLA4+ T cells engage in T-T cell interactions that mediate apoptosis: a model for lentivirus-induced T cell depletion.
      15010229 Veterinary immunology and immunopathology , 2004 Apr, : 98(3-4)203-14
    • Bull ME, Kennedy-Stoskopf S, Levine JF, Loomis M, Gebhard DG, Tompkins WA
      Evaluation of T lymphocytes in captive african lions (Panthera leo) infected with feline immunodeficiency virus.
      14596469 American journal of veterinary research , 2003 Oct. : 64(10)1293-300
    • Tompkins MB, Bull ME, Dow JL, Ball JM, Collisson EW, Winslow BJ, Phadke AP, Vahlenkamp TW, Tompkins WA
      Feline immunodeficiency virus infection is characterized by B7+CTLA4+ T cell apoptosis.
      11930318 The Journal of infectious diseases , 2002 Apr, : 185(8)1077-93
    • Bull ME, Gebhard DG, Tompkins WA, Kennedy-Stoskopf S
      Polymorphic expression in the CD8alpha chain surface receptor of African lions (Panthera leo).
      11777533 Veterinary immunology and immunopathology , 2002 Jan. : 84(3-4)181-9
    • Marta E. Bull, Caroline Mitchell, Jaime Soria, Sheila Styrchak, Corey Williams, Jillian Legard, Jennifer McKernan-Mullin, Kelli Kraft, Frankline Onchiri, Joshua Stern, Sarah Holte, Alberto La Rosa, Robert W. Coombs, Eduardo Ticona, Lisa M. Frenkel
      Monotypic low-level HIV viremias during ART are associated with disproportionate production of X4 virions and systemic immune activation
      AIDS

  • Presentations Title Event Location Date
    Low-level HIV viremias originate in part from infected proliferating cells Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI 2015) Seattle, WA Feb. 23, 2015 - Feb. 26, 2015

Overview

Medical/Professional School

Washington State University, Pullman
North Carolina State Univeristy, Raleigh, Immunology
North Carolina State Univeristy, Raleigh, Immunology

Fellowship

University of Washington, Seattle

Research Description

Dr. Bull's primary research interest includes HIV at mucosal sites, primarily but not limited to the female genital tract. Her interest in the genital tract is threefold: (1) To better define immunological milieu at mucosal sites and how this pertains to HIV persistence at these sites, (2) to better define the viral dynamics and exchange between the genital tract, blood and other tissues, and (3) to evaluate the role of other chronic viruses - such as herpes simplex virus (HSV) 1, HSV-2, cytomegalovirus (CMV), and Epstein Barr virus - in HIV persistence. Specific areas currently under study include the cellular populations associated with HIV shedding from the female genital tract and immune mechanisms that promote HIV persistence at tissue sites as a barrier to a cure for HIV.