Stephen E. Braun, PhD

Assistant Professor of Pharmacology

(985) 871-6518
18703 Three Rivers Road, Covington, LA 70433

Education & Affiliations

BS, Genetics and Cell Biology, Biochemistry, University of Minnesota, 1987;
Ph.D., Genetics, University of Minnesota, 1993;
Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Walther Oncology Center, Indiana University School of Medicine, 1993-1997;


Research Interests

My training and experience are using retroviral and lentiviral vectors to genetically modify primary lympho-hematopoietic target cells from human, monkey, and mouse tissues for multiple disease indications (genetic diseases, cancer, infectious diseases). I have evaluated enzyme expression, inhibitors of HIV/SIV, proliferation and differentiation of hematopoietic stem cells and of CD4+/CD8+ T cells, the generation of immune responses, and killing of infected cells. I have more than 25 years of experience in translational research studying gene therapy strategies targeting lympho-hematopoietic cells, with 18 years experience in NHP research (New England and Tulane National Primate Research Centers). After developing therapeutic strategies in vitro, we have used immunodeficient mouse models, progressed some to large-scale animal studies in rhesus macaque, and advanced preclinical studies to clinical trials.

Research Programs

Currently, our research program is focused on developing new CAR vectors that redirect T cells cytolytic activity towards HIV-infected cells. Additionally, we are using strategies to protect T cells from becoming infected. Other experiments are using HIV-based lentiviral vectors to genetically modify mesenchymal stem cells to induce lineage-specific differentiation or to secrete inhibitors.

Professional Awards

1993-1995 NIH Post-Doctoral Training Award, Walther Oncology Center, Indiana University School of Medicine

1995-1998 Leukemia Society of America Fellow Award, Walther Oncology Center, Indiana University School of Medicine

2003-2006 Center for AIDS Research Award, Scholar Award

2010-present Member, American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy

2012 Early Investigator Award, 30th Annual NHP AIDS Symposium

Key Presentations

  • 1999 Experimental Hematology Conference, Morocco 2010 American Society of Gene and Cellular Therapy, Washington, DC
  • 2014 Krabbe Translation Research Network Annual Conference, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
  • 2016 Retroviral Pathogenesis, New Orleans, LA
  • 2017 Non-human Primates AIDS Symposium, Madison, WI


Braun SE, Aronovich EL, Anderson RA, Crotty PL, McIvor RS, Whitley CB. Metabolic correction and cross-correction of mucopolysaccharidosis type II (Hunter syndrome) by retroviral-mediated transfer and expression of human iduronate-2-sulfatase. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 90: 11830-11834, 1993. PMID: 8265633 Braun SE, Chen K, Blazer BR, Orchard PJ, Sledge G, Broxmeyer HE, Cornetta K. Flt3 Ligand Anti-tumor Activity in a Murine Breast Cancer Model: A Comparison with GM-CSF and a Potential Mechanism of Action. Hum Gene Ther, 10:2141-2151, 1999. PMID: 10498246

Braun SE, Wong FE, Connole M, Qui G, Lee L, Gillis J, Lu X, Humeau L, Slepushkin V, Binder GK, Dropulic B, Johnson RP. Inhibition of Simian/Human Immunodeficiency Virus Replication in CD4+ T Cells Derived from Lentiviral-transduced CD34+ Hematopoietic Cells. Mol Ther, 2005; 12: 1157-1167. PMID: 16168713

Kimpel J*, Braun SE*, Qui G, Wong FE, Connole M, Schmitz JE, Brendel C, Humeau LM, Dropulic B, Rossi JJ, Berger A, von Laer D, Johnson RP. Survival of the Fittest: Positive Selection of CD4+ T cells Expressing Membrane-bound Fusion Inhibitor following HIV-1 Infection. PLoS One, 5(8): e12357. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0012357. PMID: 20808813, PMCID: PMC2925957

Braun SE*, Taube R*, Zhu Q*, Wong FE, Murakami A, Kamau E, Dwyer M, Qiu G, Daigle J, Carville A, Johnson RP, Marasco WA. In Vivo Selection of CD4+ T Cells Transduced with a Gamma-Retroviral Vector Expressing a Single-Chain Intrabody Directed Against HIV-1 Tat. Hum Gene Ther. 2012; 23(9):917-31. PMID: 22734618, PMCID: PMC3440024

Chandra PK, Gerlach SL, Wu CX, Khurana N, Swientoniewski LT, Gimble JM, Abdel-Mageed AB, Braun SE, Mondal D. Factors secreted by mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) enable latency-reactivation in HIV-1 infected U1 cells and potentiate the efficacy of approved HDAC-inhibitors. Sci Reports, 2018 Oct 2;8(1):14702. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-32657-y. PMID: 30279437.

View Dr. Braun's publications on PubMed here.