Staff Profiles

Claire Gustafson, Ph.D.

Scientist III

Claire is a Scientist in Experimental Immunology at the Allen Institute for Immunology. Prior to joining the Allen Institute, Claire was an Instructor in Immunology and Rheumatology at Stanford University. Her research focused on understanding the mechanistic underpinnings of immune aging in humans utilizing high-dimensional techniques in conjunction with the development of novel model systems to accelerate translational human immunology research. For her postdoctoral training, Claire investigated molecular regulators of T cell homeostasis and responses to aging, infection and vaccination, under the mentorship of Dr. Jorg Goronzy at Stanford University. She also was involved in multiple projects assessing whether certain disease states and/or treatments accelerate immune aging.

Claire earned her Ph.D. in Immunology from University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus, with a certificate in Clinical and Translational Science, where she studied mucosal antibody development during human infancy. She received a B.S. in Molecular, Cellular and Development Biology from University of Washington.


Research Interests

Claire’s underlying scientific focus is understanding normal, healthy immune development, function and variation over the course of a lifespan, as a basis for determining the cause of any immunological perturbations; from infection to autoimmunity to cancer.


  • Immunology
  • Immune Aging
  • Translational Science
  • Systems Biology

Research Programs:

  • Experimental Immunology
  • Healthy Aging

Selected Publications

Naïve T Cell Quiescence in Immune Aging

Advances in Geriatric Medicine and Research
June 26, 2021

C Gustafson

Association of Premature Immune Aging and Cytomegalovirus After Solid Organ Transplant

Frontiers in Immunology
May 2021

Higdon LE, Gustafson CE, Ji X, Sahoo MK, Pinsky BA, Margulies KB, Maecker HT, Goronzy J, Maltzman JS

Influence of immune aging on vaccine responses

Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
May 2020

Gustafson CE, Kim C, Weyand CM, Goronzy JJ

Immune cell repertoires in breast cancer patients after adjuvant chemotherapy

JCI Insight
February 2020

Gustafson CE, Jadhav R, Cao W, Qi Q, Pegram M, Tian L, Weyand CM, Goronzy JJ

Functional pathways regulated by microRNA networks in CD8 T-cell aging

Aging Cell
November 2018

Gustafson CE, Cavanagh MM, Jin J, Weyand CM, Goronzy JJ

Immune Checkpoint Function of CD85j in CD8 T Cell Differentiation and Aging

Frontiers in Immunology
June 2017

Gustafson CE, Qi Q, Hutter-Saunders J, Gupta S, Jadhav R, Newell E, Maecker H, Weyand CM, Goronzy JJ