Jerome Zack, Ph.D.

Jerome Zack, PhD 

Professor

Bio

Jerome Zack, Ph.D., studies how the AIDS virus replicates, with the intention of developing new therapies to treat HIV/AIDS. His research includes the use of blood and human embryonic and pluripotent stem cells to reconstitute cells lost due to HIV infection.

He also is investigating the use of stem cells to protect HIV/AIDS patients from additional viral infection. The aims to develop stem cell-based approaches that will allow scientists to genetically manipulate the human immune system – often vulnerable in HIV/AIDS patients - to provide increased protection against infectious diseases and the development of cancers.

Dr. Zack turned his focus to stem cells after discovering several years ago that HIV interferes with the ability of blood-forming stem cells to differentiate into all the cells needed for a healthy immune system. Using bone marrow derived stem cells, Dr. Zack successfully investigated stem cell gene therapy approaches to treating HIV/AIDS, which then led him to explore therapies using human embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells.

Dr. Zack is a member of the Broad Stem Cell Research Center at UCLA, professor of Medicine and Chair of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics. He joined the UCLA faculty in 1991 after completing his post doctoral training, also done at UCLA. He currently serves as Director of the UCLA Center for AIDS Research and as Associate Director of the UCLA AIDS Institute. He earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of California, Irvine, a master’s degree in medical microbiology from Cal State University, Long Beach, and a doctorate degree in immunology from the University of Texas Southwestern.

He is affiliated with the UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center and the International Society for Stem Cell Research, an independent, nonprofit organization formed to foster the exchange of information on stem cell research.

Dr. Zack’s work is funded by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, the National Institutes of Health and private donors.

Publications

Videos

Creating HIV-fighting stem cells
Human stem cells can be genetically engineered into HIV-fighting cells, according to a study by scientists with the Eli and Edythe Center of Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at UCLA Scott G. Kitchen and Jerome Zack.
Creating Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
Dr. Jerome Zack, Associate Director, UCLA AIDS Institute, professor of Medicine, Microbiology, Immunology & Molecular Genetics, and researcher with the BSCRC at UCLA discusses creating induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells.