Enabling MHC Genotype-Informed Risk Prediction, Cancer Prevention and Precision Immunotherapy

2019 Emerging Leader Award – Jaime Wyatt Miller Fellowship

Dr. Carter is studying the genetics of immunity in patients and healthy individuals to better understand when, where, and how immunotherapy can best be applied to treat cancer. The success of checkpoint inhibitors and other immunotherapies demonstrates that the immune system has potential to eliminate tumors, but many patients do not respond to these treatments. To engineer more effective therapies and improve patient outcomes, Dr. Carter and her team are performing rigorous computational analysis of the dynamic interactions between the immune system and developing tumors to predict cancer risk and uncover novel therapeutic targets. Dr. Carter received a PhD from Johns Hopkins University and conducted postdoctoral research at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine. She is currently Assistant Professor in the Division of Medical Genetics at UCSD. Dr. Carter has been selected by The Mark Foundation as recipient of the Jaime Wyatt Miller Fellowship in memory of the beloved 42-year-old wife and mother who succumbed to breast cancer in May 2018. The Mark Foundation gratefully acknowledges the generous contributions of Jaime’s friends and family in support of this award.


Castro A, Ozturk K, Pyke RM, Xian S, Zanetti M, Carter H. Elevated neoantigen levels in tumors with somatic mutations in the HLA-A, HLA-B, HLA-C and B2M genes. BMC Med Genomics. 2019.

Goodman AM, Castro A, Pyke RM, Okamura R, Kato S, Riviere P, Frampton G, Sokol E, Zhang X, Ball ED, Carter H, Kurzrock R. MHC-I genotype and tumor mutational burden predict response to immunotherapy. Genome Med. 2020.

Castro A, Pyke RM, Zhang X, Thompson WK, Day CP, Alexandrov LB, Zanetti M, Carter H. Strength of immune selection in tumors varies with sex and age. Nat Commun. 2020.