Yonekura Collier Laboratory

Principal Investigator: Ai-ris Yonekura Collier, M.D.

Dr. Ai-ris Yonekura Collier is a physician-scientist specializing in high-risk pregnancy care in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at BIDMC. The goal of her translational research is to characterize the maternal cellular immune phenotype in pregnancy disorders like preeclampsia and fetal growth restriction and in the setting of infectious disease like Zika virus or SARS-CoV-2. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she was Principal Investigator leading the hospital-wide COVID-19 Biorepository and a co-investigator for the Ad26.COV2.S COVID-19 vaccine booster trial. This work builds upon prior work performing longitudinal observational studies in pregnant individuals exposed or infected with Zika virus and creating large clinical biospecimen repositories for translational immunologic studies in pregnancy. In addition to the work in the CTU, she is an enthusiastic educator and advocate for inclusion of pregnant and lactating individuals in observational and interventional clinical trials.

Dr. Collier obtained her M.D. through the Harvard-MIT Program in Health Sciences and Technology at Harvard Medical School where she spent time in the lab of Dr. Shannon Turley, evaluating a novel mechanism of cellular immune tolerance induction by lymph node stroma cells. She is using her background in immune tolerance to study the mechanisms of maternal immune tolerance to the fetus in placenta in healthy and complicated pregnancies. As a Maternal-Fetal Medicine clinician, she represents a cross-disciplinary collaboration between the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the CVVR.

Lab Members