W. Nicholas Haining, BM, BCh

Adjunct, Department of Immunology and Virology

Assistant Professor, Pediatric Oncology

Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School

Associate Member, Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard
Office Phone: 617-632-5293
Appointment Phone: 617-632-3961
Fax: 617-632-4410
Preferred Contact Method: Office phone


Treatment Centers
Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Clinical Interests
Biological therapy/immunotherapy, Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation


Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
450 Brookline Avenue
Boston, MA  02215


Board Certifications
Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, 2000
Pediatrics, 1998
Boston Children's Hospital/Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Boston Combined Residency Program, Boston Children's Hospital/Boston Medical Center, Pediatrics
Boston Children's Hospital
Medical School
Oxford University, 1992

About the Haining Lab

The Haining Laboratory studies the molecular mechanisms that impair T cell function in cancer and chronic infections using cellular immunology, chemical biology, and functional genomics to understand the regulatory circuits that drive loss of function by exhausted T cells. We are interested in developing novel therapeutic approaches to rescue function in exhausted T cells.

In our studies of functional and dysfunctional exhausted CD8 T cells, we used transcriptional profiling of rare populations of virus-specific CD8 T cells from human blood to identify the molecular differences between effective and ineffective T-cell responses in HIV. These studies revealed a mechanism by which PD-1 coordinately upregulates a program of genes, including the transcription factor BATF, which impairs T-cell function. Using chemical screens to identify small molecules that reverse inhibition caused by the receptor PD-1, we are developing novel genetic and computational approaches to match active compounds to their target molecules.

We have also developed a novel strategy for in vivo testing of regulators of T cell function in which an inducible shRNA construct is transduced into hematopoietic stem cells using a lentiviral vector, enabling in vivo gene knockdown without subsequent manipulation. This approach is particularly valuable for studying key genes that control endogenous tumor immunity.

Appointments & Second Opinions

Speak with one of our New Patient Coordinators to schedule an appointment, refer a patient or request a second opinion. In urgent cases, we can typically see new patients within 24 hours.

Clinical Trials

Search our wide range of clinical trials, including novel therapies, immunotherapy and personalized therapy.callout bg

Harvard Medical Affiliate

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As a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School, our physicians are passing on their expertise to the next generation of pediatric hematologists and oncologists.