Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineNational Heart & Lung Institute

Professor of Mucosal Immunology



+44 (0)20 7594 2531c.johansson




367Wright Fleming WingSt Mary's Campus





Cecilia Johansson is a Professor of Mucosal Immunology in the Section of Respiratory Infections, at the National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London.

Cecilia did her undergraduate studies at Umeå University and Lund University, Sweden. She then did her PhD in the Section for Immunology at Lund University under the supervision of Professor Mary Jo Wick working on Salmonella infection and dendritic cells. She subsequently trained as a postdoctoral fellow with Brian Kelsall at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, USA, studying the role of type I interferons (IFNs) during intestinal virus infection.

In 2008, Cecilia set up an independent research group at Imperial College supported initially by a Career Development Award from the Medical Research Council. Her lab focuses on the generation and regulation of immunity via cellular crosstalk in the lung during viral infections. In particular, the lab studies the impact of type I interferons on lung inflammation and how these cytokines influence the induction of both innate and adaptive immune responses. In addition, her lab investigates how respiratory viral infections influence primary and metastatic lung cancer.

Cecilia is an an associate editor for Mucosal Immunology and Frontiers in Immunology (Mucosal Immunology Section). She is a member of the Medical Research Club, Faculty Opinions, Imperial Network for Vaccine Research and the Asthma UK Centre for Asthma and Allergy. She is also a member of the  Society for Mucosal Immunology Extramural Programs Committee and their membership committee. Cecilia also organises the Imperial CREST Academy through which Imperial College provides mentors for extracurricular science projects for 16-18 year old students. 

Work in Cecilia's laboratory is supported by grants from the MRC, BBSRC, Wellcome Trust, CRUK, BRC, the Jameel Fund and the Rosetrees Trust.

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Ogger PP, Martín MG, Michalaki C, et al., 2022, Type I interferon signaling deficiency results in dysregulated innate immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 in mice, European Journal of Immunology, Vol:52, ISSN:0014-2980, Pages:1768-1775

Michalaki C, Dean C, Johansson C, 2022, The use of precision-cut lung slices for studying innate immunity to viral infections., Current Protocols, Vol:2, ISSN:2691-1299, Pages:e505-e505

Varese A, Nakawesi J, Farias A, et al., 2022, Type I interferons and MAVS signaling are necessary for tissue resident memory CD8+ T cell responses to RSV infection, PLOS Pathogens, Vol:18, ISSN:1553-7366

Johansson C, Kirsebom F, 2021, Neutrophils in respiratory viral infections, Mucosal Immunology, Vol:14, ISSN:1933-0219, Pages:815-827

Habibi M, Thwaites R, Chang M, et al., 2020, Neutrophilic inflammation in the respiratory mucosa predisposes to RSV infection, Science, Vol:370, ISSN:0036-8075, Pages:1-15

Paulsen M, Varese A, Pinpathomrat N, et al., 2020, MAVS-deficiency is associated with a reduced T cell response upon secondary RSV infection in mice, Frontiers in Immunology, Vol:11, ISSN:1664-3224

Johansson C, Makris S, 2020, R848 or influenza virus can induce potent innate immune responses in the lungs of neonatal mice, Mucosal Immunology, Vol:14, ISSN:1933-0219, Pages:267-276

Kirsebom F, Michalaki C, Agueda-Oyarzabal M, et al., 2020, Neutrophils do not impact viral load or the peak of disease severity during RSV infection, Scientific Reports, Vol:10, ISSN:2045-2322

Nuriev R, Johansson C, 2019, Chemokine regulation of inflammation during respiratory syncytial virus infection., F1000res, Vol:8

Makris S, Paulsen M, Johansson C, 2017, Type I interferons as regulators of lung inflammation, Frontiers in Immunology, Vol:8, ISSN:1664-3224

Openshaw PJM, Chiu C, Culley FJ, et al., 2017, Protective and Harmful Immunity to RSV Infection, Annual Review of Immunology, Vol:35, ISSN:0732-0582, Pages:501-532

Johansson C, 2016, Respiratory syncytial virus infection: an innate perspective., F1000research, Vol:5, ISSN:2046-1402

Goritzka M, Makris S, Kausar F, et al., 2015, Alveolar macrophage-derived type I interferons orchestrate innate immunity to RSV through recruitment of antiviral monocytes, Journal of Experimental Medicine, Vol:212, ISSN:0022-1007, Pages:699-714

Goritzka M, Durant LR, Pereira C, et al., 2014, Alpha/Beta Interferon Receptor Signaling Amplifies Early Proinflammatory Cytokine Production in the Lung during Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infection, Journal of Virology, Vol:88, ISSN:0022-538X, Pages:6128-6136

More Publications