Research Summary

My research interests center on understanding how macrophages detect and eliminate disease-causing cells, including cancer cells, and determining why this homeostatic process fails in aging and disease. To this end, my research encompasses questions in immunology and cancer biology, and leverages a wide range of experimental approaches including genome-wide CRISPR screens, live-cell imaging, biochemical reconstitution, and animal models. We aim to systematically map the inter-cellular signaling axes between macrophages and their target cells that govern phagocytosis, with a particular focus on defining the roles of uncharacterized genes and metabolites in this process. These discovery-based efforts will allow us to understand how macrophages make the all-or-none decision to destroy another cell, to characterize pathological failure modes, and to engineer innate immune cells with enhanced therapeutic properties. The ultimate goal of my research program is to uncover fundamental biological insights that enable next-generation immunotherapies for currently untreatable diseases.


Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2023 - Genetics, Stanford University
PhD, 2016 - Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Harvard University
BS, 2009 - Biology, Stanford University

Honors & Awards

  • 2023
    Glenn/AFAR Research Grant for Junior Faculty
  • 2023
    Larry L. Hillblom Start-Up Grant
  • 2022
    NIH/NCI K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award
  • 2018
    Jane Coffin Childs Memorial Fund Postdoctoral Fellowship
  • 2017
    Stanford Dean’s Postdoctoral Fellowship
  • 2016
    Keystone Symposia Future of Science Scholarship
  • 2010
    National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship

Selected Publications

  1. Ahn G, Riley NM, Kamber RA, Wisnovsky S, Moncayo von Hase S, Bassik MC, Banik SM, Bertozzi CR. Elucidating the cellular determinants of targeted membrane protein degradation by lysosome-targeting chimeras. Science. 2023 10 20; 382(6668):eadf6249.  View on PubMed
  2. Chen Y, Craven GB, Kamber RA, Cuesta A, Zhersh S, Moroz YS, Bassik MC, Taunton J. Direct mapping of ligandable tyrosines and lysines in cells with chiral sulfonyl fluoride probes. Nat Chem. 2023 Nov; 15(11):1616-1625.  View on PubMed
  3. Yu H, Kamber RA, Denic V. The peroxisomal exportomer directly inhibits phosphoactivation of the pexophagy receptor Atg36 to suppress pexophagy in yeast. Elife. 2022 04 11; 11.  View on PubMed
  4. Kamber RA, Nishiga Y, Morton B, Banuelos AM, Barkal AA, Vences-Catalán F, Gu M, Fernandez D, Seoane JA, Yao D, Liu K, Lin S, Spees K, Curtis C, Jerby-Arnon L, Weissman IL, Sage J, Bassik MC. Inter-cellular CRISPR screens reveal regulators of cancer cell phagocytosis. Nature. 2021 09; 597(7877):549-554.  View on PubMed
  5. Wainberg M, Kamber RA, Balsubramani A, Meyers RM, Sinnott-Armstrong N, Hornburg D, Jiang L, Chan J, Jian R, Gu M, Shcherbina A, Dubreuil MM, Spees K, Meuleman W, Snyder MP, Bassik MC, Kundaje A. A genome-wide atlas of co-essential modules assigns function to uncharacterized genes. Nat Genet. 2021 05; 53(5):638-649.  View on PubMed
  6. Han K, Pierce SE, Li A, Spees K, Anderson GR, Seoane JA, Lo YH, Dubreuil M, Olivas M, Kamber RA, Wainberg M, Kostyrko K, Kelly MR, Yousefi M, Simpkins SW, Yao D, Lee K, Kuo CJ, Jackson PK, Sweet-Cordero A, Kundaje A, Gentles AJ, Curtis C, Winslow MM, Bassik MC. CRISPR screens in cancer spheroids identify 3D growth-specific vulnerabilities. Nature. 2020 04; 580(7801):136-141.  View on PubMed
  7. Haney MS, Bohlen CJ, Morgens DW, Ousey JA, Barkal AA, Tsui CK, Ego BK, Levin R, Kamber RA, Collins H, Tucker A, Li A, Vorselen D, Labitigan L, Crane E, Boyle E, Jiang L, Chan J, Rincón E, Greenleaf WJ, Li B, Snyder MP, Weissman IL, Theriot JA, Collins SR, Barres BA, Bassik MC. Identification of phagocytosis regulators using magnetic genome-wide CRISPR screens. Nat Genet. 2018 12; 50(12):1716-1727.  View on PubMed
  8. Weir NR, Kamber RA, Martenson JS, Denic V. The AAA protein Msp1 mediates clearance of excess tail-anchored proteins from the peroxisomal membrane. Elife. 2017 09 14; 6.  View on PubMed
  9. Eapen VV, Waterman DP, Bernard A, Schiffmann N, Sayas E, Kamber R, Lemos B, Memisoglu G, Ang J, Mazella A, Chuartzman SG, Loewith RJ, Schuldiner M, Denic V, Klionsky DJ, Haber JE. A pathway of targeted autophagy is induced by DNA damage in budding yeast. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2017 02 14; 114(7):E1158-E1167.  View on PubMed
  10. Kamber RA, Shoemaker CJ, Denic V. A molecular switch for selective autophagosome formation. Autophagy. 2015 Nov 02; 11(11):2132-2133.  View on PubMed
  11. Kamber RA, Shoemaker CJ, Denic V. Receptor-Bound Targets of Selective Autophagy Use a Scaffold Protein to Activate the Atg1 Kinase. Mol Cell. 2015 Aug 06; 59(3):372-81.  View on PubMed
  12. Valenzano DR, Kirschner J, Kamber RA, Zhang E, Weber D, Cellerino A, Englert C, Platzer M, Reichwald K, Brunet A. Mapping loci associated with tail color and sex determination in the short-lived fish Nothobranchius furzeri. Genetics. 2009 Dec; 183(4):1385-95.  View on PubMed

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