Innate Immunity

The Innate Immunity Program provides a structured environment for the selection, development, application, interpretation and optimization of immunoassays that interrogate relevant preclinical and clinical gastrointestinal or liver pathologies at the molecular, cellular and organized tissue level. For this purpose, the Innate Immunity Program is organized into 3 technology centers:

  1. Cytometry program
  2. Multiplex bioassay program
  3. Microscopy program that in combination offers a suite of integrated services ranging from consultation and protocol development to data acquisition, interpretation and trouble shooting.

The Innate Immunity Program supports the research of individual members (junior, senior and those new to the field of digestive diseases), fosters interactions and collaborations (between center members as well as across the Center and other programs), and serves as a regional hub that focuses and promotes digestive disease research at large.

Innate Immunity Collaborations

  • Flow Cytometry/Cell Sorting
  • Automacs and column-based cell sorting (Miltenyi Biotech)
  • MesoScale Discovery multiplex ELISA/Luminex bead arrary assay
  • Peripheral blood mononuclear cell isolation
  • Confocul microscopy



Brent Palmer, PhD

Dr. Brent Palmer has over 20 years of experience and over 40 publications in the field of clinical immunology and infectious diseases. Dr. Palmer has extensive experience with flow cytometry and has taught students and faculty at the University of Colorado how to apply flow cytometry-based techniques to their studies for over 7 years. Dr. Palmer is an Associate Professor in the Divisions of Allergy and Clinical Immunology and Infectious Diseases.

Cara Wilson MD

Cara Wilson, MD​

Dr. Cara Wilson is a Professor of Medicine with tenure in the Division of Infectious Diseases at University of Colorado at Denver and holds a secondary appointment in the Department of Immunology. Her R01-funded laboratory laboratory studies the human immune response to HIV-1 infection and the factors that drive HIV-1 pathogenesis in intestinal mucosal tissue, especially microbiome-related factors. She has extensive experience in designing and implementing clinical trials, in particular in studies of HIV-associated immune activation and immune-based therapies, through her involvement in the national AIDS Clinical Trials Group (ACTG). She currently serves as vice-chair of the ACTG Immune Activation Focus Group. She is a graduate faculty member in the Department of Immunology and serves as a research mentor to graduate students in Immunology, in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP), and in the Biomedical Sciences Program (BSP). She has extensive experience in mentoring over 20 research trainees, ranging from pre-doctoral students to junior faculty. She is also a member of the UC Denver Mucosal Inflammation Program (MIP), which provides a supportive infrastructure for studies of intestinal inflammation. She serves as Vice Chair for Faculty Advancement for the Department of Medicine, and in that role promotes faculty career development and leadership training in research, clinical practice, and educational missions.

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