Paolo Vignali, PhD

Education & Training

  • University of Tennessee-Knoxville, BA, 2013
  • University of Pittsburgh, PhD, 2022

Representative Publications

Vignali, P.D.A., DePeaux, K., Watson, M.J. et al. Hypoxia drives CD39-dependent suppressor function in exhausted T cells to limit antitumor immunity. Nat Immunol (2022).

Ford BR*, Vignali PDA*, Rittenhouse NL, Scharping NE, Peralta R, Lontos K, Frisch AT, Delgoffe GM, Poholek AC. Tumor microenvironmental signals reshape chromatin landscapes to limit the functional potential of exhausted T cells. Sci Immunol. 2022 Aug 5;7(74):eabj9123. doi: 10.1126/sciimmunol.abj9123. Epub 2022 Aug 5. PMID: 35930654. *co-first author

Jayaprakash P*, Vignali PDA*, Delgoffe GM, Curran MA. Hypoxia Reduction Sensitizes Refractory Cancers to Immunotherapy. Annu Rev Med. 2022 Jan 27;73:251-265. doi: 10.1146/annurev-med-060619-022830. Epub 2021 Oct 26. PMID: 34699264. *co-first author

Watson MJ, Vignali PDA, Mullett SJ, Overacre-Delgoffe AE, Peralta R, Grebinowski S, Menk AV, Rittenhouse NL, DePeaux K, Whetstone RD, Vignali DAA, Hand TW, Poholek AC, Morrison BM, Rothstein JD, Wendell SG, Delgoffe GM. (2021). Regulatory T cell functional identity is sustained by a glucose:lactate axis that is exploited in the tumor microenvironment. Nature. doi:

Scharping NE, Rivadeneria DB*, Menk AV*, Vignali PDA, Rittenhouse NL, Ford RB, Ronal P, DePeaux K, Poholek AC, Delgoffe GM. (2021). Metabolic stress induced by continuous stimulation under hypoxia rapidly promotes a terminally exhausted T cell state. Nature Immunology. doi:

Research Interests

Developing our understanding of the influence cellular metabolism poses upon anti-tumor immune responses and designing therapeutic strategies that exploit these pathways in immunotherapy refractory tumors. 

Research Grants

Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award F30 - Tumor-infiltrating terminally exhausted CD8+ T cells augment the suppressive microenvironment within solid tumor

Cancer Immunotherapy Training Program T32

Medical Scientist Training Program T32

Student Year


Career Advisor

Robert Ferris, MD, PhD

Thesis Advisor

Greg Delgoffe, PhD

Graduate Program

Dissertation Title




Training Period

2016- Present

Student Year Term