Headshot photo of Afam A. Okoye

Afam A. Okoye

  • Associate Professor, VGTI-Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute
  • Oregon National Primate Research Center


Afam Okoye graduated from University of Nigeria, Nsukka with a B.Sc. in Microbiology in 1998. He then went on to Nottingham Trent University, UK, to receive a M.Sc. in Biotechnology in 1999. His Ph.D. was achieved in Virology from the University of Glasgow, Scotland in 2004. Subsequently Afam moved to OHSU’s Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute (VGTI) first as a Postdoctoral fellow and then as a Staff Scientist from 2008-2013. Afam is currently a Research Associate Professor at VGTI.

Education and training

    • B.S., 1998, University of Nigeria
    • M.S., 1999, Nottingham Trent University
    • Ph.D., 2004, University of Glasgow

Areas of interest

  • HIV pathogenesis and cure
  • Immunotherapy
  • Therapeutic vaccines


Selected publications

  • DeGottardi MQ, Okoye AA, Vaidya M, Talla A, Konfe AL, Reyes MD, Clock JA, Duell DM, Legasse AW, Sabnis A, Park BS, Axthelm MK, Estes JD, Reiman KA, Sekaly RP, Picker LJ; Effect of Anti-IL-15 Administration on T Cell and NK Cell Homeostasis in Rhesus Macaques. J Immunol. 2016 Aug15;197(4):1183-98. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1600065. [PMID: 27430715]
  • Okoye AA, Picker LJ. CD4 (+) T-cell depletion in HIV infection: mechanisms of immunological failure. Immunol Rev. 2013 Jul;254(1):54-64. (doi:10.1111/imr.12066.) [PMID: 23772614, PMCID: PMC3729334]        
  • Okoye AA, Rohankhedkar M, Abana C, Pattenn A, Reyes M, Pexton C, Lum R, Sylwester A, Planer SL, Legasse A, Park BS, Piatak M Jr, Lifson JD, Axthelm MK, Picker LJ. Naive T cells are dispensable for memory CD4+ T cell homeostasis in progressive simian immunodeficiency virus infection. J Exp Med. 2012 Apr 9;209(4):641-51. (doi:10.1084/jem.20112071.) [PMID: 22451717, PMCID: PMC3328373] Epub 2012 Mar 26.    
  • Fukazawa Y, Lum R, Okoye AA, Park H, Matsuda K, Bae JY, Hagen SI, Shoemaker R, Deleage C, Lucero C, Morcock D, Swanson T, Legasse AW, Axthelm MK, Hesselgesser J, Geleziunas R, Hirsch VM, Edlefsen PT, Piatak M Jr, Estes JD, Lifson JD, Picker LJ. B cell follicle sanctuary permits persistent productive simian immunodeficiency virus infection in elite controllers. Nat Med. 2015 Jan 19. (doi: 10.1038/nm.3781.) [PMID: 25599132]
  • Okoye AA, Hansen SG, Vaidya M, Fukazawa Y, Park H, Duell DM, Lum R, Hughes CM, Ventura AB, Ainslie E, Ford JC, Morrow D, Gilbride RM, Legasse AW, Hesselgesser J, Geleziunas R, Li Y, Oswald K, Shoemaker R, Fast R, Bosche WJ, Borate BR, Edlefsen PT, Axthelm MK, Picker LJ, Lifson JD. Early antiretroviral therapy limits SIV reservoir establishment to delay or prevent post-treatment viral rebound. Nat. Med. 2018 Aug 6. doi: 10.1038/s41591-018-0130-7. [PMID: 30083858]
  • Okoye AA, Rohankhedkar M, Konfe AL, Abana CO, Reyes MD, Clock JA, Duell DM, Sylwester AW, Sammader P, Legasse AW, Park BS, Axthelm MK, Nikolich-Žugich J, Picker LJ. Effect of IL-7 therapy on naïve and memory T cell homeostasis in aged rhesus macaques. J. Immunol. 2015 Nov 1;195(9):4292-305. [PMID: 26416281]


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