Dr Rita Carsetti is an established and successful scientist who has spent a large part of her career at the Max-Planck-Institute for Immunobiology in Freiburg (Germany) studying B cell development and function in the mouse. When she came back to Italy at the Bambino Gesù Children Hospital IRCCS, she used her experience and discoveries in the mouse to identify the different steps of B cell development in humans. After the identification and description of transitional B cells in mouse and humans, she determined the role of the spleen in the generation of mouse B-1a and human IgM memory B cells. Her work is now concentrated on the development, function and maintenance of human memory B cells.
The alterations occurring in defined genetic diseases has led to the discrimination of different types of memory B cells with separate and non-interchangeable functions and to the distinction of innate and adaptive memory B cells.
The COVID-19 pandemics has highlighted the importance of the changes occurring in the immune system with age and the development of new effective vaccines demonstrates the role of B cell memory in the prevention of COVID-19. Dr. Carsetti is now concentrating her work on the study of the establishment, evolution and duration of vaccine induced B cell memory in healthy adults and patients with primary and secondary immune deficiency.
At Bambino Gesù Children Hospital Dr. Carsetti is responsible for the Clinical and Research Diagnostic Immunology Units. She works for the International Union of Immunological Societies as Publication Chair and Vaccine Committee.