The ‘Lymph Node Single-Cell Genomics Ancestry (LEGACY) Network’ is a Chan Zuckerberg-funded project. The discovery of vaccines effective against global and emerging pathogens is complicated by geographic differences in vaccine responsiveness. The relative contribution of genetic and environmental factors to differential immune responses after vaccination remains poorly defined, and is complicated by the spectrum of immune cell types involved. This group will contextualize the vaccine response of lymph nodes through the creation of an ancestrally diverse single-cell atlas. UK residents from diverse ancestral backgrounds including East and West African and South and South-East Asian ancestries, will be invited to participate. Throughout the project, experts in patient and public involvement and engagement (PPIE) will maximize local community involvement in vaccine discovery.
Community outreach will be fostered by hosting vaccine engagement events with the British Society for Immunology, Imperial College London Great Exhibition Road Festival, and Oxford University Natural History Museum, designed to expressly engage scientists, researchers and the public, particularly those from Black, Asian, and other underreseached communities. These findings will inform scientists’ understanding of the role of ancestry in the immune response, enabling the design of better vaccines that protect health and prevent disease for the benefit of everyone. Prof. Teressa Lamb and Dr Samantha Vanderslott are Co-PIs.