Michelle Swanson-Mungerson, Ph.D.

Downers Grove, IL

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Dr. Michelle Swanson-Mungerson earned her Ph.D. in Immunology from Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine in 2002 followed by a post-doctoral fellowship at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University until 2008. She then became a faculty member at Midwestern University where she teaches immunology and infectious disease to multiple programs. She is a National Faculty Member for the NBOME and contributes to the COMLEX and the Foundations of Biomedical Sciences COMAT. She is a member of the American Association of Immunology and serves on their Education Committee. She was awarded funding from the National Institutes of Health for her work in Epstein-Barr virus research, has published over 15 articles, and has been an invited speaker at national and international conferences.


Downers Grove, IL

Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine
College of Dental Medicine-Illinois
College of Graduate Studies - IL
Chicago College of Optometry

Microbiology & Immunology

Biomedical Sciences (M.A.)
Biomedical Sciences (M.B.S.)
Dental Medicine
Osteopathic Medicine

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Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine | 2002 | Ph.D.
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign | 1995 | B.S.

Courses Taught


  • Nature of Antibodies: Structure and Function
  • Antigen-Antibody based tests and Diagnostics (I and II)
  • Humoral Immunity (I and II)
  • Mucosal Immunity
  • Immune Response to Infection (I and II)
  • Active Immunization
  • Transplantation Immunology
  • Tumor Immunology
  • Autoimmune Cases
  • Immunodeficiencies

Infectious Disease

  • Human Immunodeficiency Virus
  • Epstein Barr Virus
  • Human Cytomegalovirus
  • Hepatitis Viruses (A-G)
  • Yellow Fever Virus
  • Dengue Virus
  • Infections of the Oral Cavity


Research Area #1: Advances in our treatment options for Hodgkin's lymphoma (HL) are critical in light of the fact that the incidence of HL is on the rise, due to an increase of HL in AIDS patients. Virtually all cases of HIV-associated HL tumors are infected with Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV), indicating that EBV is essential for developing the tumor microenvironment in these individuals. This HL tumor microenvironment is absolutely vital for the survival of the malignant Hodgkin-Reed Sternberg (HRS) cells of HL. The current dogma is that EBV infects B cells that are the precursors of the HRS cells, and promotes initial HRS cell survival through the expression of the EBV protein, LMP2A. However, once the microenvironment is established, the ability of LMP2A to contribute to the tumor microenvironment that is vital for HRS survival remains unknown. The long term goal of our laboratory is to understand how EBV influences the tumor microenvironment in HL in order to develop novel strategies to enhance HL treatment success.  Current projects in our lab are addressing two critical areas to investigate how LMP2A directly promotes the generation of a tumor microenvironment that promotes tumor survival and inhibits the anti-tumor immune response.

Research Area #2: Cyanobacteria are microorganisms that can grow extensively in both salt water and fresh water sources throughout the world that cause disease to humans and animals. The significance of cyanobacteria toxicity to humans and animals is increasing due a rise in the number of cyanobacterial blooms. Cyanobacteria produce multiple toxins including lipopolysaccharides (LPS) that are associated with human illness such as fever, allergy, headache, respiratory disease and gastro-intestinal illness. In collaboration with other faculty members at MWU, our longterm goal is to understand the mechanisms by which cyanobacteria LPS activate cells of the immune system to promote disease.


For a list of all publications, please use this link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/myncbi/michelle.swanson-mungerson.1/bibliography/52546554/public/?sort=date&direction=descending

M. Swanson-Mungerson, P. Williams, J. Gurr, R. Incrocci, V. Subramaniam, K. Radowska, M. Hall, A.M.S. Mayer. Biochemical and Functional Analysis of Cyanobacterium Oscillaoria Sp. LPS on human monocytes. Toxicol Sci. 2019 Jul 4. PMID: 3127142

Ryan Incrocci, Jason McAloon, Michael Montesano, Jonathan Bardahl, Saivenkat Vagvala, Amanda Stone, Michelle Swanson-Mungerson. “Epstein-Barr Virus LMP2A utilizes SYK and PI3K to activate NF-kB in B cell lympho­mas to increase MIP-1α production.” Journal of Medical Virology. 91(5): 845-55. 2019. PMID: 30609049

M. Swanson-Mungerson, Vijay Subramaniam, Ryan Incrocci, Philip Williams, Mary Hill, and Alejandro Mayer. “Effects of Cyanobacteria Oscillatoria sp. Lipopolysaccharide on B cell Activation and Function.” Toxicol. Lett. 275: 101-107, 2017. PMID 28499610.

Ryan Incrocci, Levi Barse, Amanda Stone, Sai Vagvala, Michael Montesano, Vijay Subramaniam, M. Swanson-Mungerson.Epstein-Barr Virus Latent Membrane Protein 2A (LMP2A) enhances IL-10 production through the activation of Bruton's tyrosine kinase and STAT3.” Virology. 500: 96-102, 2017. PMID: 27792904

Ryan Incrocci, Samira Hussain, Amanda Stone, Kathryn Bieging, Lauren Alt, Mike Fay, and M. Swanson-Mungerson: “Epstein-Barr Virus Latent Membrane Protein 2A (LMP2A)-Mediated changes in Fas Expression and Fas-Dependent Apoptosis: Role of Lyn/Syk activation.” Cellular Immunology. 297 (2): 108-19, 2015. PMID: 26255694

Ryan Incrocci, Molly McCormack, and M. Swanson-Mungerson. “Epstein-Barr Virus LMP2A increases IL-10 production in mitogen-stimulated primary B cells and B cell lymphomas.” Journal of General Virology, 94 (Pt5): 1127-1133, 2013.PMID: 23303827

Swanson-Mungerson, M., Bultema R. and R. Longnecker. “Epstein-Barr Virus LMP2A Imposes Sensitivity to Apoptosis.” Journal of General Virology.  91(Pt 9):2197-202, 2010. PMID: 20484564

Beiging, K.T., Swanson-Mungerson, M., Amick, A.C., Longnecker, R. “Epstein-Barr Virus in Burkitt’s lymphoma: a role for latent membrane protein 2A.” Cell Cycle. 9(5):901-8, 2010. PMID: 20160479.

Bultema, R., Longnecker R, and M.A. Swanson-Mungerson. “Epstein Barr Virus Latent Membrane Protein 2A (LMP2A) accelerates Myc-Induced Lymphomagenesis.” Oncogene. 19;28(11):1471-6, 2009. PMID: 19182823



Member, American Association of Immunologists

Member, American Association of Immunologists (AAI) Education Committee

Executive Council Member, Autumn Immunology Conference

National Faculty Member, National Board of Medical Examiners (NBOME)


Title: Functions of Epstein-Barr Virus LMP2A in Latency

Agency: National Cancer Institute/National Institutes of Health (1R15CA149690-01)

Principal Investigator: Michelle Swanson-Mungerson, Ph.D.


Midwestern Univeristy Little John Award Winner, 2019

American Association of Immunologists Laboratory Travel Grant,  2018

American Association of Immunologists Junior Faculty Travel Grant, 2011

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