Dr. Caleph B. Wilson is a postdoctoral scholar in the Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute and the Department of Microbiology of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Wilson investigates immunological therapeutics to treat cancer and HIV infections. Specifically, his work seeks to understand the impact of gene modifications in patient T cells with the goal of transforming these T cells into effective killers of HIV-infected cells and malignant tumors.
Before coming to Penn, Dr. Wilson earned his doctorate in Pathobiology at the University Park Campus of The Pennsylvania State University, and his undergraduate degree in Biology from Alcorn State University. By engaging in biomedical research as an undergraduate, graduate student, and postdoc, Dr. Wilson has fully immersed himself in the biological sciences, fulfilling his lifelong goal to investigate human diseases.
Interacting with exemplary mentors has been crucial to Dr. Wilson’s progression from a small southern town to producing scholarly work at the University of Pennsylvania. As a result, he has prioritized the mentoring of undergraduates, graduate students and fellow postdocs throughout his academic career. Dr. Wilson’s passion for mentoring was fostered during his time as an undergraduate at Alcorn State University. He has successfully translated his enthusiasm for mentoring into essential leadership roles at Penn. Dr. Wilson is a co-chair of the Biomedical Postdoctoral Council, where he seeks to represent University of Pennsylvania postdocs on campus, in the local community, and nationally.
Dr. Wilson anticipates that the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields will lead all future industries in the U.S. and globally. This interest in the development of the future of STEM drew Dr. Wilson to follow policy developments in the scientific world, eventually taking this interest one step further as a Public Policy Fellow for the American Association of Immunologists. In addition, as an affiliate member of the Center for Minority Serving Institutions, Dr. Wilson works to build and maintain crucial pipelines for STEM students at Minority Serving Institutions.
In order to expand the interest in STEM, Dr. Wilson co-founded the National Science & Technology News Service (NSTNS). NSTNS is a repository of scientists and journalist that are available to “sci-plain” current health and science breakthroughs, as well as, highlight STEM in general news releases. Important to this outreach effort is the use of social media to overcome the traditional barriers to science communication.
Overall, Dr. Wilson hopes to impact society by both developing successful therapies to eradicate cancers and HIV infections, and guiding talented STEM students as they pursue careers as lifelong scientists. Also, he believes that our country’s economy health is directly linked to science literacy and STEM aptitude of the workforce.