Biomarker Core

 Maria Laura Gennaro, Director; Rahul Ukey, Core Manager; Natalie Bruiners, Ioannis Michailidis, Abhilasha Mishra, Usha Ganapathi, Rehan Khan, Alberta Onyka, Jeisac Guzman Rivera.

The mission of the NJ ACTS biomarker core is to promote and support non-oncological translational research by Rutgers investigators and their collaborators. Our team of experts in molecular and cellular biology and in immunology helps identify state-of-the-art approaches to tackle research questions in infectious and non-infectious diseases.

The core’s services span assistance in experimental design and project development, scientific collaboration and consultation. Supported by access to BSL2+ and BSL3 laboratories, the biomarker core is uniquely apt at supporting COVID-19 research.



Core Services
  1. Collaborative studies and assistance with data generation for manuscript or grant preparation
  2. Detection and titration of antibodies (polyreactive and Ag-specific); Analysis of Immunoglobulin classes and subclasses; Immunoglobulin fucosylated state
  3. Non-neutralizing antibody effector functions: ADCC and ADCP
  4. Memory B cell and T cell immunophenotyping
  5. RNA flow cytometry
  6. High-throughput antibody assays
  7. Custom Luminex-based immunoassay
  8. Antigen-specific antibody purification
  9. Extraction of dried blood from microsampling devices for immunoassays
Consultation Requests

Schedule a virtual consultation to determine how the Biomarker Core can serve your scientific needs.

Please complete the Service Request Form and email the form to Rahul Ukey (, who will then be in contact for your virtual consultation.

Additional Information – Important: Because projects carried out in the facility involve pathogens, we require adherence to regulations or approvals by standard operating procedures (SOP), institutional review boards (IRB) and institutional biosafety committees (IBC) for all experiments. For additional questions regarding biosafety contact REHS: office phone (973) 972-8424.

Fee Structure
Consultation Immunoassays
Consultation Free 2 hour
Academic NJ ACTS member $50 per hour
Academic NJ ACTS non-member $75 per hour
Industry $100 per hour
Core Supported Projects
Project Title Brief Description
miRNAs as biomarkers of asthma exacerbation Investigate circulating microRNA as non-invasive biomarkers of asthma exacerbation
Clinical trial (VIDAS-TB, Biomerieux) A whole-blood-based, fully automated platform for diagnosis of M. tuberculosis infection (multiple clinical trial phases)
Rutgers Corona Cohort (RCC) Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 over time in a longitudinal cohort of Rutgers health care workers established at the pandemic onset
SARS-CoV-2-specific humoral and cellular immune responses Detection of SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies, neutralizing titer and virus-specific T and B cell responses in convalescent donors among Rutgers employees
Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in Essex county, NJ Venue-based approach to study seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 using a blood microsampling device
Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in volunteer firefighters Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 among firefighters recruited for the NJ Firefighter Cancer Assessment and Prevention Study
Convalescent plasma therapy To correlate the clinical outcome of convalescent plasma treatment of COVID-19 with the properties of the donor plasma
Severe SARS-CoV-2 induced illness in children To identify abnormal immune phenotypes in children diagnosed with pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome or severe acute COVID-19 illness
SARS-CoV-2 prevalence in dental health care workers To determine the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies in dental health care workers
SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence in people with HIV Detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody using mail in finger prick microsampling device
Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in Hispanix/Latinx communities Investigate association between race/ethnicity and SARS-CoV-2 prevalence
Seroprevalence of SARS- CoV-2 in dental patients Detection of SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies in dental patients recruited at Rutgers School of Dental Medicine’s dental clinics
Post COVID care program Detection of SARS-CoV- 2 specific antibodies in patients recruited from Saint Barnabas Medical center and studying long-term effects of COVID-19 infection
CONNECT to Predict Sick Children Identifying biological markers to predict severe illness in children caused by COVID-19 infection
Probiotics Clinical Trial Live microbials to boost Anti-SARS-CoV-2 immunity clinical trial for Danisco USA Inc.
RECOVER: Researching COVID to Enhance Recovery High-throughput approach for detecting anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies from dried blood spots (approx. 15,000 samples)
RECOVER pediatric cohort -Tier 2 To characterize the antiviral antibody repertoire in association to post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 (long COVID)
RECOVER pathobiology study To study the effector functions of circulating antibodies in post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 (long COVID)
Prenatal Genetic Diagnosis by Genomic Sequencing: A Prospective Evaluation (PrenatalSEQ) Maternal-fetal transmission of infection- and vaccine-induced antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 proteins
Guerrini V., Panettieri R.A. Jr, Gennaro M.L. Lipid-laden macrophages as biomarkers of vaping-associated lung injury. Lancet Respir. Med. Feb;8(2):e6. doi: 10.1016/S2213-2600(19)30476-X. (2020)
Bruiners N., Dutta N.K., Guerrini V., Salamon H., Yamaguchi K.D., Karakousis P.C., Gennaro M.L. The anti-tubercular activity of simvastatin is mediated by cholesterol-dependent regulation of autophagy via the AMPK-mTORC1-TFEB axis. J. Lipid Res. 2020 Aug;jlr.RA120000895. doi: 10.1194/jlr.RA120000895.
Staquicini D.I., Tang F.H.F., Markosian C., Yao V.J., Staquicini F.I., Dodero-Rojas E., Contessoto V.G., Davis D., O’Brien P., Habib N., Smith T.L., Bruiners N., Sidman R.L., Gennaro M.L., Lattime E.C., Libutti S.K., Whitford P.C., Burley S.K., Onuchic J.N., Arap W., Pasqualini R. Design and proof-of-concept for targeted phage-based COVID-19 vaccination strategies with a streamlined cold-free supply chain. Proceedings National Academy Sciences U S A. Jul 27;118(30):e2105739118 (2021)
Horton D.B., Barrett E.S., Roy J., Gennaro M.L., Andrews T., Greenberg P., Bruiners N., Datta P., Ukey R., Velusamy S.K., Fine D., Honnen W.J., Yin Y., Pinter A., Brooks A., Tischfield J., Hussein S., Jagpal S., Swaminathan S., Parmar V., Reilly N., Gaur S., Panettieri Jr. R.A., Carson J., Blaser M.J. Determinants and dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 infection in a diverse population: 6-month evaluation of a prospective cohort study. Journal Infectious Diseases jiab411 August 13 2021, (2021)
Datta P., Ukey R., Bruiners N., Honnen W., Carayannopoulos M.O., Reichman R., Choudhary A., Onyuka A., Handler D., Guerrini V., Mishra P.K., Dewald. H.K., Lardizabal A., Lederer L., Leiser A.L., Hussain S., Jagpal S.K., Radbel J., Bhowmick T., Horton D.B., Barrett E.S., Xie Y.L., Fitzgerald-Bocarsly P., Weiss S.H., Woortman W., Parmar H., Roy J., Dominguez-Bello M.G., Blaser M.J., Carson J.L., Panettieri R.A. Jr., Libutti S.K., Raymond H.F., Pinter A., Gennaro M.L. Highly versatile antibody binding assay for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Journal Immunological Methods 2021, 499, 113165 (2021)
Raymond H.F., Datta P., Ukey R., Wang P., Martino R.J., Krause K.D., Rosmarin-DeStefano C., Pinter A., Halkitis P. N., Gennaro M.L. Self-reported symptoms, self-reported viral testing result and seroprevalence of SARS CoV-2 among a community sample in Essex County New Jersey: A brief report. Journal Racial Ethnic Health Disparities 10.1007/s40615-021-01175-5 (2021)
Ukey, R., Bruiners, N., Mishra, H., Mishra, P.K., McCloskey, D., Onyuka, A., Chen, F. Pinter, A., Weiskopf, D., Sette, A., Roy, J., Gaur, S., Gennaro, M.L. Dichotomy between the humoral and cellular responses elicited by mRNA and adenoviral vector vaccines against SARS-CoV-2. BMC Medicine 20, 32 10.1186/s12916-022-02252-0 (2022)
Feldman C.A., Fredericks-Younger J., Subramanian G., Gennaro, M.L., Coker M., Fine D. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 screening to augment dental office and patient safety. Journal American Dental Association (2022), May;153(5):399-402. doi: 10.1016/j.adaj.2021.12.011. (2022)
Bruiners N., Guerrini V., Ukey R., Dikdan R., Yang J., Mishra P.K., Onyuka A., Handler D., Vieth J., Carayannopulos M., Guo S., Pollen M., Pinter A., Tyagi S., Feingold D., Philipp C., Libutti S., Gennaro M.L. Longitudinal analysis of biologic correlates of COVID-19 resolution: case report. Frontiers in Medicine 2022 Jun 15;9:915367. doi: 10.3389/fmed.2022.915367. (2022)
Horwitz L.I., et al, RECOVER Consortium. Researching COVID to Enhance Recovery (RECOVER) adult study protocol: Rationale, objectives, and design. PLoS One. 2023 Jun 23;18(6):e0286297. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0286297. eCollection 2023.
Guerrini V., Prideaux B., Khan R., Subbian S., Wang Y., Sadimin E., Pawar S., Ukey R., Singer E. A., Xue C., Gennaro M.L. Heterogeneity of foam cell biogenesis across diseases. BioRxiv, 2023. doi: 10.1101/2023.06.08.542766. Preprint.

Leadership Team

Maria Laura Gennaro, M.D. M.Sc.

Maria Laura Gennaro, M.D. M.Sc.

Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology Public Health Research Institute Rutgers New Jersey Medical School View Profile >>
Rahul Ukey, Ph.D.

Rahul Ukey, Ph.D.

Core Manager

Public Health Research Institute