Department of Comparative Medicine

Thea Brabb, D.V.M., Ph.D., Dipl. ACLAM


Professor and Chair

D.V.M., University of Illinois 1985

P: 206-685-9346
F: 206-685-3006

About Dr. Brabb

Dr. Brabb received her D.V.M. from the University of Illinois in 1985. After 7 years of private veterinary practice, she entered a residency program in Laboratory Animal Medicine at the University of Washington. During and following her residency, she completed a Ph.D. She joined the faculty in Comparative Medicine in 2001 and participates in management of the Veterinary Services Unit, rotates as one of the senior faculty overseeing the veterinary care of the research animals at the University of Washington, and has an active research program.

Research, Service & Training Interests

Dr. Brabb’s research interests are focused on immunological tolerance and autoimmunity. The laboratory works primarily on a mouse model of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) investigating how infectious agents modulate the development of IBD. The laboratory has demonstrated that certain bacterial organisms can prevent IBD in some types of mice while causing it in others. The focus of the research is on determining how these bacteria stimulate a regulatory T cell population which is instrumental in preventing autoimmune disease. In addition to the lab’s work in IBD models, Dr. Brabb actively pursues research questions related to mouse models of central nervous system autoimmunity. Specifically, she is interested in the trafficking and function of regulatory T cells in the central nervous system and the loss of tolerance to central nervous system antigens. Finally, she is concerned about the use of analgesics in laboratory animals and has received a grant from the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine to study whether pain can be detected and prevented following embryo transfer in mice.

Selected Publications

Hukkanen, RR, M. Richarson, J.C. Wingfield, P. Treuting, T. Brabb. 2003. Avipox in a Gray-crowned Rosy Finch (Leucosticte tephrocotis) Colony. Comparative Medicine. 53:548-552.

Burich, A, Hershberg, R, Waggie, K, Zeng, W, Brabb, T, Westrich, G, Viney,JL, and Maggio-Price, L. 2001. Helicobacter-induced inflammatory bowel disease in IL-10- and T cell-deficient mice. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 281:G764-778.

Huseby, E.S., D. Liggitt, T. Brabb, B. Schnabel, C. Ohlen and J. Goverman. 2001. A pathogenic role for myelin-specific CD8+ T cells in a model for multiple sclerosis. J. Exp Med., 194:669-676.

Brabb T, von Dassow P, Ordonez N, Schnabel B, Duke B, Goverman J. 2000. In situ tolerance within the central nervous system as a mechanism preventing autoimmunity. J. Exp. Med. 192:871-80.

Harrington,C.J., A.Paez, T.Hunkapiller, V.Mannikko, T.Brabb, M.Ahearn, C.Beeson, and J.Goverman. 1998. Differential tolerance is induced in T cells recognizing distinct epitopes of myelin basic protein. Immunity. 8:571-580.

Sant’Angelo,D.B., B.Lucas, P.G.Waterbury, B.Cohen, T.Brabb, J.Goverman, R.N.Germain, and C.A.Janeway, Jr. 1998. A molecular map of T cell development. Immunity. 9:179-186.

Brabb,T., R.Rubicz, V.Mannikko, and J.Goverman. 1997. Separately expressed T cell receptor alpha and beta chain transgenes exert opposite effects on T cell differentiation and neoplastic transformation. Eur.J.Immunol. 27:3039-3048.

Goverman,J., T.Brabb, A.Paez, C.Harrington, and P.von Dassow. 1997. Initiation and regulation of CNS autoimmunity. Crit.Rev.Immunol. 17:469-480.

Goverman,J., T.Brabb, E.S.Huseby, and A.G.Farr. 1997. TCR Signaling Regulates Thymic Organization: Lessons from TCR-Transgenic Mice. Immunol.Today 18:204-208.

Brabb,T., E.S.Huseby, T.M.Morgan, D.B.Sant’Angelo, J.Kirchner, A.G.Farr, and J.Goverman. 1997. Thymic Stromal Organization is Regulated by the Specificity of T Cell Receptor/Major Histocompatibility Complex Interactions. Eur.J.Immunol. 27:136-146.

Brabb,T., A.W.Goldrath, P.von Dassow, A.Paez, H.D.Liggitt, and J.Goverman. 1997. Triggers of autoimmune disease in a murine T-cell receptor transgenic model for multiple sclerosis. J.Immunol. 159:497-507.

Goverman,J. and T.Brabb. 1996. Rodent models of experimental allergic encephalomyelitis applied to the study of multiple sclerosis. Lab.Anim.Sci. 46:482-492.

Watts,J.D., T.Brabb, E.J.Bures, R.L.Wange, L.E.Samelson, and R.Aebersold. 1996. Identification and characterization of a substrate specific for the T cell protein tyrosine kinase ZAP-70. FEBS Lett.398:217-222.

Brabb,T., L.Maggio-Price, D.Dale, B.Deeb, and D.Liggitt. 1995. Pancreatic adenocarcinoma in two grey collie dogs with cyclic hematopoiesis. Lab.Anim.Sci. 45:357-362.