June Round, PhD

Research Interests

  • Immunology
  • Microbial Pathogenesis


Lab Website


  • English

Academic Information

  • Departments: Pathology - Associate Professor
  • Divisions: Microbiology and Immunology

Academic Office Information

  • 801-213-4164
  • Huntsman Cancer Institute
    2000 Circle of Hope, Room: Rm 5242
    Salt Lake City, UT 84112

Email: june.round@path.utah.edu

Research Statement

The mammalian immune system is charged with the task of recognizing microbial molecules and subsequently coordinating pathogen clearance. However, humans are host to a multitude of symbiotic microorganisms called the microbiota. This diverse consortium of bacteria take up residence on almost all environmentally exposed surfaces of the body, with the greatest diversity and number of organisms residing within the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Since both pathogenic and commensal microorganisms share similar molecular patterns, it remains unclear how host immune responses toward symbiotic bacteria are prevented. Diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease, (IBD) result from a loss of host tolerance to commensal bacteria, thus understanding the mechanisms by which the host tolerates the microbiota and in turn how the microbiota influences the host immune system is paramount toward gaining a deeper understanding of mucosal biology and developing therapies for the treatment of intestinal disease.

Interests in the lab include 1) Understanding how T cell intrinsic Toll like receptor (TLRs) signaling governs T cell responses and how this impacts host tolerance toward the microbiota. 2) Identification and characterization of novel host genes within mucosal T cells regulated by the microbiota. 3) Understand how specific commensal organisms are able to regulate the host adaptive immune system and impact disease states.

In an effort to understand how commensal micro-organisms shape host immune responses we have focused our investigations on a prominent human commensal organism, Bacteriodes fragilis. We use animals raised in a completely sterile environment (called germ-free mice) as a model host organism. In this way we can associate the animals with a single species of bacteria and determine how these organisms are able to influence host immune system development. We have shown that animals colonized with B.fragilis are protected from inflammatory bowel disease. We have identified the molecule made by B.fragilis responsible for its protective activity and identified the host receptor that recognizes this molecule. Not only is this pathway important for host protection from disease but it is also plays a role in bacterial colonization. Thus we have uncovered a symbiotic communication circuit between host and bacteria that provides benefits to both members. Discovery of other pathways that exist between host and bacteria may lead to the discovery of bacterial products that could ultimately be used as therapies to treat human disease.

Education History

Type School Degree
Postdoctoral Fellowship California Institute of Technology
Laboratory of Sarkis K. Mazmanian
Postdoctoral Fellow
Doctoral Training University of California at Los Angeles
Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics
Graduate Training University of the Pacific
Molecular Biology
Undergraduate California Lutheran University
Biology, (Cum Laude)

Selected Publications

Journal Article

  1. Klag K, Round JL (2020). Immunology: How the Microbiota Digests Bile to Protect against Viral Infection. Curr Biol, 30(20), R1271-R1272.
  2. Sanchez JMS, Doty DJ, DePaula-Silva AB, Brown DG, Bell R, Klag KA, Truong A, Libbey JE, Round JL, Fujinami RS (2020). Molecular patterns from a human gut-derived Lactobacillus strain suppress pathogenic infiltration of leukocytes into the central nervous system. J Neuroinflammation, 17(1), 291.
  3. Yeung F, Chen YH, Lin JD, Leung JM, McCauley C, Devlin JC, Hansen C, Cronkite A, Stephens Z, Drake-Dunn C, Fulmer Y, Shopsin B, Ruggles KV, Round JL, Loke P, Graham AL, Cadwell K (2020). Altered Immunity of Laboratory Mice in the Natural Environment Is Associated with Fungal Colonization. Cell Host Microbe, 27(5), 809-822.e6.
  4. Petersen C, Bell R, Klag KA, Lee SH, Soto R, Ghazaryan A, Buhrke K, Ekiz HA, Ost KS, Boudina S, OConnell RM, Cox JE, Villanueva CJ, Stephens WZ, Round JL (2018). T cell-mediated regulation of the microbiota protects against obesity. Science, 365(6451).
  5. Brown DG, Soto R, Yandamuri S, Stone C, Dickey L, Gomes-Neto JC, Pastuzyn ED, Bell R, Petersen C, Buhrke K, Fujinami RS, OConnell RM, Stephens WZ, Shepherd JD, Lane TE, Round JL (2019). The microbiota protects from viral-induced neurologic damage through microglia-intrinsic TLR signaling. eLife, 8.
  6. Gogokhia L, Buhrke K, Bell R, Hoffman B, Brown DG, Hanke-Gogokhia C, Ajami NJ, Wong MC, Ghazaryan A, Valentine JF, Porter N, Martens E, OConnell R, Jacob V, Scherl E, Crawford C, Stephens WZ, Casjens SR, Longman RS, Round JL (2018). Expansion of Bacteriophages Is Linked to Aggravated Intestinal Inflammation and Colitis. Cell Host Microbe, 25(2), 285-299.e8.
  7. Soto R, Petersen C, Novis CL, Kubinak JL, Bell R, Stephens WZ, Lane TE, Fujinami RS, Bosque A, OConnell RM, Round JL (2017). Microbiota promotes systemic T-cell survival through suppression of an apoptotic factor. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 114(21), 5497-5502.
  8. Chiaro TR, Soto R, Zac Stephens W, Kubinak JL, Petersen C, Gogokhia L, Bell R, Delgado JC, Cox J, Voth W, Brown J, Stillman DJ, OConnell RM, Tebo AE, Round JL (2017). A member of the gut mycobiota modulates host purine metabolism exacerbating colitis in mice. Sci Transl Med, 9(380).
  9. Kubinak JL, Stephens WZ, Soto R, Petersen C, Chiaro T, Gogokhia L, Bell R, Ajami NJ, Petrosino JF, Morrison L, Potts WK, Jensen PE, OConnell RM, Round JL (2015). MHC variation sculpts individualized microbial communities that control susceptibility to enteric infection. Nat Commun, 6, 8642.
  10. Kubinak JL, Petersen C, Stephens WZ, Soto R, Bake E, OConnell RM, Round JL (2015). MyD88 signaling in T cells directs IgA-mediated control of the microbiota to promote health. Cell Host Microbe, 17(2), 153-63.
  11. Round JL, Lee SM, Li J, Tran G, Jabri B, Chatila TA, Mazmanian SK (2011). The Toll-like receptor 2 pathway establishes colonization by a commensal of the human microbiota. Science, 332(6032), 974-7.
  12. Round JL, Mazmanian SK (2010). Inducible Foxp3+ regulatory T-cell development by a commensal bacterium of the intestinal microbiota. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 107(27), 12204-9.
  13. Mazmanian SK, Round JL, Kasper DL (2008). A microbial symbiosis factor prevents intestinal inflammatory disease. Nature, 453(7195), 620-5.


  1. Ost, K and June L Round (2018). Communication between the microbiota and mammalian immunity. [Review]. Annu Rev Microbiol, 72, 399-422.
  2. Kubinak, J, and June L Round (2016). Do antibodies select a healthy microbiota? [Review]. Nat Rev Immunol, 16, 767-774.


  1. Round, JL and Noah Palm (2018). Casual effects of the microbiota on immune-mediated disease. 9(3), 20.
  2. Ost, K and June L Round (2017). A Few Good Commensals: Gut microbes use IFN-? to Fight Salmonella. 46(6), 977-979.
  3. Brown, DG, and June L Round (2017). Friends in low places: Intestinal commensals limit colitis through molecular mimcry. 171(3), 503-505.


  1. Round J (2011). Antigen specific Tregs and specific and related compositions, methods and systems. U.S. Patent No. 20110287048. Washington, D.C.:U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
  2. Round J (2010). Methods and Systems for identifying immunomodulatory substances. U.S. Patent No. 20100275282. Washington, D.C.:U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.