Background: Ingileif obtained her BSc degree in biology from the University of Iceland in 1975. She worked at the Department of Immunology, St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School, London, UK (1975-76) and was a doctoral student at the Department of Immunology, and assistant teacher the Biology Laboratory, University of Stockholm, Sweden (1976-83). She received her Fil.Dr. degree from University of Stockholm in 1991. Since 1984 Ingileif has worked at the Department of Immunology, Landspitali, first on the immunology of psoriasis and the last 20 years mainly on vaccine research. She became Associate Professor of Immunology in 1994 and is Professor of Immunology, at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Iceland since 2006 and Head of Division of Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases, at deCODE genetics since 2005.
Prof. Jonsdottir is a former Member of the Science Committee of the University of Iceland (1999-2002), Member of the Quality Assurance Committee of the University of Iceland (2007-11) and Member of the Icelandic Research and Policy Council (2003-9). She was Chair of the National Bioethics Committee (1999-2002) and Member of the Nordic Committee on Bioethics (2002-2009, Chair in 2005). She was Delegate for Iceland in EU FP Programme Committees (1999-2007; FP4: Biotechnology, FP5:Quality of Life, FP6: Genomic and Biotechnology), and is Specialist in EU FP7 Programme Committee on Health (since 2007)
Research: Prof. Jonsdottir’s research focuses on the limitations of the neonatal immune system and how they can be circumvented by vaccination strategies, including adjuvants, mucosal and maternal immunization. Her group works with neonatal mouse models for optimization of immune responses against pneumococcal, meningococcal and influenza infections, using polysaccharide-protein conjugate, novel protein and subunit vaccines. They study the effects of immunization routes and novel adjuvants on acceleration, increase and persistence of B- and T-cell responses, germinal center reaction and dissection of the mechanisms involved. The group also works on polysaccharide induced hyporesponsiveness and its effects on antibodies and immunological memory elicited by conjugate vaccines. Prof. Jonsdottir also works on human immunology, focusing on long-term B-and T-cell memory induced by vaccination against pneumococci, meningococci, smallpox and influenza.
At deCODE genetics Prof. Jonsdottir leads the research on genetics of vaccine responses, infectious disesases, autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.
Grants: Ingileif has received numerous grants from national and international research funds, including the EU-framework programmes (FP5: NeoVac-EC, PREVIS, FP6: FluVac, ReBaVac) and PATH, US (PVP: Murine Reference Model of Pneumococcal Vaccination and Protection), The Icelandic Research Fund, The Landspitali University Hospital Research Fund and The University of Iceland Research Fund. At deCODE she is responsible for infection/vaccine related grants (FP6: PNEUMOPATH, FP7: ADITEC, IMI: BioVacSafe)
Ingileif’s vaccine research group:
Sindri Freyr Eidsson
Stefania P Bjarnarson
Siggeir Fannar Brynjolfsson
Thorunn Asta Olafsdottir