The David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MITThe David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

National Cancer Institute Cancer Center

Science + Engineering... Conquering Cancer Together

J. Christopher Love, PhD

Raymond A. (1921) And Helen E. St. Laurent Professor of Chemical Engineering

Professor of Chemical Engineering

Associate Member, Broad Institute

Associate Member, Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard



KI Research Areas of Focus:
Nano-based Drugs, Personalized Medicine
Cancer Immunology

"The Love Lab is an interdisciplinary team that combines principles from chemical and biological engineering with genomic sciences to address critical questions emerging in biotechnology today.  We seek to understand the evolution of disease and responses upon interventions using our platform of technologies for single-cell analysis, and to accelerate the development and accessibility of recombinant biopharmaceuticals and vaccines using an integrated holistic approach to biomanufacturing.  We focus on applications in chronic human diseases like cancer, autoimmunity, and food allergy, as well as infectious diseases."

Learn more about how the Love lab is using miniature micro titer plates and micro fluidics to evaluate populations of cells, maximize their productivity, and ultimately improve the process for developing cancer biologics by watching this video: "Inside the Lab: J. Christopher Love, Ph.D."

J. Christopher Love is Professor of Chemical Engineering and a member of the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT.  He is also an Associate Member of the Broad Institute, and an Associate Member at the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT, and Harvard. Love earned a BS in chemistry from the University of Virginia and a PhD in physical chemistry at Harvard University under the supervision of George Whitesides. Following completion of his doctoral studies, he extended his research into immunology at Harvard Medical School with Hidde Ploegh from 2004-2005, and at the Immune Disease Institute from 2005-2007. Dr. Love has been named a W.M. Keck Distinguished Young Scholar for Medical Research (2009), a Dana Scholar for Human Immunology (2009), and a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar.  Prof. Love served as a Distinguished Engineer in Residence at Biogen from 2015-2016.  He has co-authored more than 100 manuscripts and is an inventor on multiple patents.

Professor Love is co-founder of OneCyte Biotechnologies, HoneyComb Biotechnologies, and Sunflower Therapeutics. He serves as an advisor to SQZ Biotechnologies, Repligen, QuantrumCyte, and other companies.

Further Information

Research Summary

The Love Lab seeks to advance the discovery and development of new therapeutics using a patient-centric, data-driven approaches.  Using a suite of technologies for single-cell analysis pioneered by the lab over the last decade, we aim to resolve the essential cells involved in the evolution of diseases like cancer and food allergy, as well as those that may offer beneficial protection through interventions like therapies or vaccines.  Based on a simple array of subnanoliter wells, we have developed a range of analytical capabilities to assess the genomes, transcriptomes, secretomes, and interactions of individual cells derived from primary samples.  Examples of recent advances include single-cell genomic sequencing in metastatic cancer, multi-cellular assays to assess cytotoxicity or viral neutralization, and isolation of antigen-specific B and T cells from the immune system.  With the Shalek Lab at MIT, we have recently advanced a portable and efficient method for single-cell RNA-sequencing we call Seq-Well.  We are applying these tools to follow the immune responses elicited during oral immunotherapies for food allergy (in collaboration with Wayne Shreffler at MGH) and uncovering the intercellular networks of cells in tumors during the course of interventional immunotherapy.  These technological advances afford enhanced resolution of the state of a disease and responses to interventions that may provide new ways to stratify patients based on molecular/cellular signatures, and ultimately suggest new targets for drug development.

We also aim to accelerate the development and accessibility of biopharmaceuticals and vaccines for patients globally.  The ability to precisely define diseases on the basis of molecular features or cellular phenotypes is creating the opportunity to conceptualize new strategies for treatments, vaccines, and potentially cures.  Manufacturing of such therapies remains a critical link between discovery and patients, and ensuring accessibility to new and existing medicines is essential.  The Love Lab is creating integrated holistic approaches to the development and manufacturing of vaccines and biopharmaceuticals using a combination of principles from chemical engineering and biological engineering including state-of-the-art tools for genome editing and RNA sequencing.  We recently have demonstrated the end-to-end automated production of multiple biopharmaceuticals and potential vaccine components with clinical-grade quality in a bench-top system.  Currently, we are advancing the breadth of products through host engineering and integrated process design.  We believe the ability to produce high-quality recombinant proteins in modular systems offers unique abilities to test new medicines rapidly and potentially to change how medicines are supplied to patients.

Selected Publications

Crowell LE, Lu AE, Love KR, Stockdale A, Timmick SM, Wu D, Wang YA,  Doherty W,  Bonnyman A, Vecchiarello N, Goodwine C, Bradbury L, Brady JR, Clark JJ, Colant NA,  Cvetkovic A, Dalvie NC, Liu D, Liu Y, Mascarenhas CA, Matthews CB,  Mozdzierz NJ,  Shah KA, Wu SL, Hancock WS, Braatz RD, Cramer SM, Love, JC. On-demand manufacturing of clinical-quality biopharmaceuticals. Nat Biotechnol 2018.

Love KR, Dalvie NC, Love JC. "The yeast stands alone: the future of protein biologic production" Current Opinion in Biotechnology 53. (2018): 50-58. PubMed PMID: 29277062

Mandal A, Boopathy AV, Lam LKW, Moynihan KD, Welch ME, Bennett NR, Turvey ME, Thai N, Van JH, Love JC, Hammond PT, Irvine DJ. Cell and fluid sampling microneedle patches for monitoring skin-resident immunity. Sci Transl Med 2018;10:eaar2227.

Adalsteinsson VA,  Ha G,  Freeman SS,  Choudhury AD, Stover DG, Parsons HA, Gydush G, Reed SC, Rotem D, Rhoades J, Loginov D, Livitz D, Rosebrock D, Leshchiner I, Kim J, Stewart C, Rosenberg M,  Francis JM, Zhang CZ, Cohen O,  Oh C,  Ding H, Polak P, Lloyd M, Mahmud S, Helvie K, Merrill MS, Santiago RA, O'Connor EP, Jeong SH, Leeson R, Barry RM, Kramkowski JF, Zhang Z, Polacek L,  Lohr JG, Schleicher M, Lipscomb E,  Saltzman A, Oliver NM, Marini L, Waks AG, Harshman LC,  Tolaney SM, Van Allen EM, Winer EP, Lin NU, Nakabayashi M, Taplin ME, Johannessen CM, Garraway LA, Golub TR, Boehm JS, Wagle N, Getz G, Love JC, Meyerson M. Scalable whole-exome sequencing of cell-free DNA reveals high concordance with metastatic tumors. Nat Commun 2017, 8 (1), 1324.

Gierahn TM, Wadsworth MH, 2nd, Hughes TK, Bryson BD, Butler A, Satija R, Fortune S, Love JC, Shalek AK. Seq-Well: portable, low-cost RNA sequencing of single cells at high throughput. Nat Methods. 2017. doi: 10.1038/nmeth.4179 PMCID: 5376227.

Lowther DE, Goods BA, Lucca LE, Lerner BA, Raddassi K, van Dijk D, Hernandez AL,  Duan X, Gunel M, Coric V, Krishnaswamy S, Love JC, Hafler DA. PD-1 marks dysfunctional regulatory T cells in malignant gliomas. JCI Insight 2016, 1 (5) PMCID: PMC4864991.

Cao Y, Goods BA, Raddassi K, Nepom GT, Kwok WW, Love JC, Hafler DA. Functional inflammatory profiles distinguish myelin-reactive T cells from patients with multiple sclerosis. Sci Transl Med. 2015 May 13;7(287):287ra74. PMC4497538.

Zhang CZ, Adalsteinsson VA, Francis J, Cornils H, Jung J, Maire C, Ligon KL, Meyerson M, Love JC. Calibrating genomic and allelic coverage bias in single-cell sequencing. Nat Commun. 2015 Apr 16;6:6822 PMCID: 4922254.

Lohr JG, Adalsteinsson VA, Cibulskis K, Choudhury AD, Rosenberg M, Cruz-Gordillo P, Francis JM, Zhang CZ, Shalek AK, Satija R, Trombetta JJ, Lu D, Tallapragada N, Tahirova N, Kim S, Blumenstiel B, Sougnez C, Lowe A, Wong B, Auclair D, Van Allen EM, Nakabayashi M, Lis RT, Lee GS, Li T, Chabot MS, Ly A, Taplin ME, Clancy TE, Loda M, Regev A, Meyerson M, Hahn WC, Kantoff PW, Golub TR, Getz G, Boehm JS, Love JC. Whole-exome sequencing of circulating tumor cells provides a window into metastatic prostate cancer. Nat Biotechnol. 2014 May;32(5):479-84. PubMed PMID: 24752078; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4034575.

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Contact Information

J. Christopher Love

room 76-253
phone (617) 324-2300

Love Lab

phone (617) 324-5295
fax (617) 258-5042

Administrative Assistant:

Mariann Murray
room 76-261
phone (617) 253-0632