Cheryl Lichti, PhD

Cheryl Lichti, PhD

Associate Professor, Pathology & Immunology


  • Immunobiology


  • BA, Chemistry, Hendrix College, Conway, AR
  • PhD, Organic Chemistry, Duke University, Durham, NC
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Organic Chemistry, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO


  • 2021 Outstanding Paper of the Year Award, Department of Pathology and Immunology

Research Interests

Most of my work has revolved around mass spectrometric method development and data analysis for the identification and quantification of proteins and their chemical and post-translational modifications (PTMs). More recently, my focus has shifted to immunopeptidomics, an emerging field in which MHC-bound peptides are isolated and analyzed by LC-MS/MS to obtain sequence information. In collaboration with Dr. Robert Schreiber, I am characterizing the immunopeptidomes of various tumor cell lines with the specific goal of identifying tumor neoantigens. I am working with Dr. Emil Unanue and Dr. Xiaoxiao Wan to identify Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) self-antigens.

Selected Publications

Wan X, Zinselmeyer BH, Zakharov PN, Vomund AN, Taniguchi R, Santambrogio L, Anderson MS, Lichti CF, Unanue ER, Pancreatic islets communicate with lymphoid tissue via exocytosis of insulin peptides. Nature 2018 Aug: 560 (7716): 107-111.
Alspach E, Lussier DM, Miceli AP, Kizhvatov I, DuPage M, Luoma AM, Meng W, Lichti CF, Esaulova E, Vomund AN, Runci D, Ward JP, Gubin MM, Medrano RFV, Arthur CD, White JM, Sheehan KCF, Chen A, Wucherpfennig KW, Jacks T, Unanue ER, Artyomov MN, Schreiber RD. MHC-II neoantigens shape tumour immunity and response to immunotherapy. Nature 2020; 574(7780):696-701.
Wan X, Vomund AN, Peterson OJ, Chervonsky AV, Lichti CF, Unanue ER, The MHC-II peptidome of pancreatic islets identifies key features of autoimmune peptides. Nat Immunol. 2020 Apr;21(4):455-463. (co-corresponding author)
Lichti CF. Identification of spliced peptides in pancreatic islets uncovers errors leading to false assignments. Proteomics. 2021 (7-8); 2000176.
Vomund AN, Lichti CF, Peterson OJ, Arbelaez AM, Wan X, Unanue ER. Blood leukocytes recapitulate diabetogenic peptide-MHC-II complexes displayed in the pancreatic islets. J. Exp. Med. 2021 Jun 7; 218 (6).