Musie Ghebremichael, PhD

Assistant Professor
Harvard Medical School and Ragon Institute of Harvard MGH and MIT 400 Technology Square
Cambridge, MA 02139, USA


Dr. Ghebremichael is an Assistant Professor of Statistics at Harvard Medical School. He is the director of biostatistics and databases cores at the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard. He provides statistical support to researchers located primarily at the institute, but also to Ragon affiliated investigators within other departments at Harvard, MGH, MIT and University of Kwazulu Natal, South Africa. Dr. Ghebremichael earned his PhD in statistics from Rice University and did a post-doctoral fellowship at Yale University where his primary research focus was on statistical methods applied to HIV/AIDS research. Before joining the Ragon Institute, Dr. Ghebremichael was a research scientist at Harvard University Center for AIDS Research (HU CFAR) and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute


• (1989-1993) B.Sc. Mathematics Asmara University, Eritrea
• (1998-2000) M.Sc. Statistics University of Arkansas, AR
• (2000-2005) Ph.D. Statistics Rice University, TX

Research Interest

Scientific Activities


1. Rojo J, Ghebremichael M. Estimation of ordered bivariate mean residual life functions. J Multivariate Anal. 2006; 97: 431-454. doi: 10.1016/j.jmva.2005.03.015
2. Sikkema K, Hansen N, Ghebremichael M, et al. A randomized controlled trial of a group intervention for AIDS-bereaved HIV positive adults: Longitudinal effects on grief. Health Psychol. 2006; 25(5): 563-570. doi: 10.1093/geronb/53B.6.P384
3. Hansen N, Ghebremichael M, Tarakeshwar N, Zhang H, Kochman A, Sikkema KJ. Longitudinal effects of coping on outcome in a randomized controlled trial of a group intervention for HIV- positive adults with AIDS-related bereavement. Death Stud. 2006; 30(8): 795. doi: 10.1080/07481180600776002
4. Ghebremichael M, Hansen N, Zhang H, Sikkema K. The dose-effect of a group intervention for bereaved HIV-positive individuals. Group Dynamics: Theory Res Pract. 2006; 10(3): 167-180. doi: 10.1037/1089-2699.10.3.167
5. Lin H, Katsovich L, Ghebremichael M, et al. Psychosocial stress predicts future symptom severities in children and adolescents with Tourette syndrome and/or obsessive compulsive disorder. J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 2007; 48(2): 157-166. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2006.01687.x
6. Kawikova I, Leckman J, Kronig H, et al. Decreased number of regulatory T cells suggests impaired immune tolerance in children with Tourette’s syndrome. Biol Psychiatry. 2007; 61(3): 273-278. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2006.06.012
7. Manrique M, Micewicz E, Kozlowski P, et al. DNA-MVA vaccine protection after X4 SHIV challenge in macaques correlates with day-of-challenge antiviral CD4+ cell- mediated immunity levels and post-challenge preservation of CD4+ T cell memory. AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2008; 24(3): 505-517. doi: 10.1089/aid.2007.0191
8. Sikkema KJ, Wilson PA, Hansen NB, et al. Effects of a coping intervention on transmission risk behavior among people living with HIV/AIDS and a history of childhood sexual abuse. JAIDS. 2008; 47(4): 506-513. doi: 10.1097/QAI.0b013e318160d727
9. Paintsil E, Ghebremichael M, Romano S, Andiman WA. Absolute CD4+ T-lymphocyte count as a surrogate marker of pediatric HIV disease progression. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2008; 27(7): 629-635. doi: 10.1097/INF.0b013e3181693892
10. Ghebremichael M. Nonparamatric estimation of mean residual life function. Lifetime Data Anal. 2009; 15(1): 107-119. doi: 10.1007/s10985-008-9089-x
11. Ghebremichael M, Paintsil E, Ickovics J, et al. Longitudinal association of alcohol use with HIV disease progression and psychological health of women with HIV. AIDS Care. 2009; 21(7): 834-841. doi: 10.1080/09540120802537864
12. Ghebremichael M, Paintsil E, Larson U. Alcohol abuse, sexual risk behaviors and sexually transmitted infections in women in Moshi urban district, northern Tanzania. Sex Transm Dis. 2009; 36(2): 102-117. doi: 10.1097/OLQ.0b013e31818b20e6
13. Ghebremichael M, Larson U , Paintsil E. Association of age at first sex with HIV-1, HSV-2 and other STIs among women in northern Tanzania. Sex Transm Dis. 2009; 36(9): 570-576. doi: 10.1097/OLQ.0b013e3181a866b8
14. Argiris A, Buchanan A, Brockstein B, et al. Docetaxel and irinotecan in recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer: A phase II trial of the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group. Cancer. 2009; 115(19): 4504-4513. doi: 10.1002/cncr.24528
15. Sabbisetti V, Di Napoli A, Seeley A, et al . p63 promotes cell survival through fatty acid synthase. PLoS One. 2009; 4(6): e5877. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0005877
16. Ghebremichael M, Paintsil E. High risk behaviors and sexually transmitted infections among men in Tanzania. AIDS Behav. 2009; 13(4): 757-782. doi: 10.1007/s10461-009-9594-2
17. Rosenblatt J, Wu Z, Vasir B, et al. Generation of tumor-specific T lymphocytes using dendritic cell/tumor fusions and anti CD3/CD28. J Immunother. 2010; 33(2): 155-166. doi: 10.1097/CJI.0b013e3181bed253
18. Wong AH, Williams K, Reddy S, et al. Alterations in natural killer cell receptor profiles during HIV-1 disease progression among chronically infected South African adults. AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2010; 26(4): 459-469. doi: 10.1089/aid.2009.0176
19. Genega B, Ghebremichael M, Najarian R, et al. Carbonic anhydrase IX expression in renal neoplasms correlation with tumor type and grade. Am J Clin Pathol. 2010; 134(6): 873-879. doi: 10.1309/AJCPPPR57HNJMSLZ
20. Cho D, Cohen M, Panka D, et al. The efficacy of the novel dual PI3-Kinase/mTOR Inhibitor NVP-BEZ235 compared to Rapamycin in renal cell carcinoma. Clin Cancer Res. 2010; 16(14): 3628-3638. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-09-3022
21. Kallem S, Renner L, Ghebremichael M, Paintsil E. Prevalence and pattern of disclosure of HIV status in HIV-infected children in Ghana. AIDS Behav. 2011; 15(6):1121-1127. doi: 10.1007/s10461-010-9741-9
22. Richer J, Ghebremichael M, Chudley AE, Robinson WM, Wilfond BS, Solomon MZ. Research use of leftover newborn Attitudes of Canadian geneticists regarding storage and informed consent requirements. Genet Med. 2011; 13(4): 305-313. doi: 10.1097/GIM.0b013e3181f69da0
23. Alter G, Jost S, Rihn S, et al. Reduced frequencies of NKp30+NKp46+ and CD161+ NK cells in acute HCV infection may predict viral clearance. J Hepatol. 2011; 55(2): 278-288. doi: 10.1016/j.jhep.2010.11.030
24. Paintsil E, Dutschman GE, Hu R, et al. Determinants of individual variation in intracellular accumulation of anti-hiv nucleoside analog metabolites. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2011; 55(2): 895-903. doi: 10.1128/AAC.01303-10
25. Renner L, Ghebremichael M, Goka B, Lartey M, Kwara A, Paintsil E. Predictors of trends were similar for absolute and percentage CD4+ T-lymphocytes in HIV-infected children in Ghana. Journal of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. 2011; 6(1): 7-15. doi: 10.3233/JPI-2011-0293
26. Argiris A , Ghebremichael M, Burtness B, Axelrod RS, Deconti RC, Forastiere AA. Phase II Trial of PS-341 (NSC 681239) followed by the addition of Doxorubicin at progression in advanced adenoid cystic carcinoma of the head and neck: A trial of the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (E1303). Cancer. 2011; 117(15): 3374-3382. doi: 10.1002/cncr.25852
27. Luteijn R, Sciaranghella G, Lunzen J, et al. Early viral replication in lymphnodes provides HIV with a means by which to escape NK cell mediated control. Eur J Immunol. 2011; 41(9): 2729-2740. doi: 10.1002/eji.201040886
28. Matthews L, Giddy J, Ghebremichael M, et al. A risk-factor guided approach to reducing the likelihood of lactic acidosis and hyperlactatemia in patients on antiretroviral therapy. PLoS One. 2011; 6(4): e18736. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0018736
29. Santosuosso M, Righi E, Hill ED, et al. R5-SHIV Induces Multiple Defects in T Cell Function During Early Infection of Rhesus Macaques Including Accumulation of T reg Cells in Lymph Nodes. PLoS One. 2011; 6(4): e18465. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0018465
30. Dugast AS, Tonelli A, Berger CT, et al. Decreased Fc receptor expression on innate immune cells is associated with impaired antibody-mediated cellular phagocytic activity in chronically HIV-1 infected individuals. Virology. 2011; 415(2): 160-167. doi: 10.1016/j.virol.2011.03.012
31. Berger C, Frahm N, Mothe B, et al. High functional avidity CTL responses to HLA-B restricted Gag-epitopes are associated with relative HIV control. J Virol. 2011; 85(18): 9334-9345. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00460-11
32. Ndlovu BG, Danaviah S, Moodley E, et al. Use of dried blood spots for the determination of genetic variation of interleukin-10, killer immunoglobulin-like receptor and HLA class I genes. Tissue Antigens. 2012; 79(2): 114-122. doi: 10.1111/j.1399-0039.2011.01807.x
33. Ranasinghe S, Flanders M, Cutler S, et al. HIV-Specific CD4 T Cell Responses to Different Viral Proteins Have Discordant Associations with Viral Load and Clinical Outcome. J Virol. 2012; 86(1): 277-283. doi: 10.1128/JVI.05577-11
34. Sips M, Sciaranghella G, Diefenbach T, et al. Altered distribution of mucosal NK cells during HIV infection. Mucosal Immunol. 2012; 5(1): 30-40. doi: 10.1038/mi.2011.40
35. Julg B, Poole D, Ghebremichael M, et al. Factors Predicting Discordant Virological and Immunological Responses to Antiretroviral Therapy in HIV-1 Clade C infected Zulu/Xhosa in South Africa. PLoS One. 2012; 17(2): e31161. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031161
36. Angin M, Kwon D, Streeck H, et al. Preserved function of regulatory T cells in chronic HIV-1 infection despite decreased numbers in blood and tissue. J Infect Dis. 2012; 205(10): 1495-1500. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jis236
37. Fan X, Liu E, Freudenreich O, et al. No effect of longitudinal intranasal insulin treatment on psychopathology and cognition in patients with schizophrenia. J Clin Psychopharmacol. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2013.01.034
38. Ghebremichael M, Habtzghi D, Paintsil E. Deciphering the epidemic synergy of herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) on human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection among women in sub-Saharan Africa. BMC Res Notes. 2012; 5: 452. doi: 10.1186/1756-0500-5-451
39. Ghebremichael M, Finkelman M. The effect of premarital sex on sexually transmitted infections and high risk behaviors in women. J AIDS HIV Res. 2013; 5(2): 59-64.
40. Argiris A, Ghebremichael M, Gilbert J, et al. Phase III randomized, placebo-controlled trial of docetaxel with or without gefitinib in recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer: an eastern cooperative oncology group trial. J Clin Oncol. 2013; 31(11): 1405-1414. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2012.45.4272
41. Dandamudi U, Ghebremichael M, et al. A Phase II Study of Bevacizumab and High-Dose Interleukin-2 in Patients with Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma: A Cytokine Working Group (CWG) Study. J Immunother. doi: 10.1097/CJI.0000000000000003
42. Dinter J, Gourdain P, Lai N, et al. Different antigen processing activities in dendritic cells, macrophages and monocytes lead to uneven production of HIV epitopes and affect CTL recognition. J Immunol. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1400491
43. Chetty S, Porichis F, Govender P, et al. Tuberculosis distorts the inhibitory impact of IL-10 in HIV infection. AIDS. doi: 10.1097/QAD.0000000000000437
44. Cosgrove C, Berger CT, Kroy DC, Cheney PC, Ghebremichael M, et al. Chronic HCV infection affects NK cell phenotype in the blood more than in the liver. PLoS One. 2014; 9(8). doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0105950
45. Wanebo HJ, Lee J, Burtness BA, et al. Introduction cetuximab, paclitaxel, and carboplatin followed by chemoradiation with cetuximab, paclitaxel, and carboplatin for stage III/IV head and neck squamous cancer: A phase II ECOG-ACRIN trial (E2303). Ann Oncol. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdu248
46. Vaidya SA, Streeck H, Beckwith N, et al. Temporal effect of HLA-B*57 on viral control during primary HIV-1 infection. Retrovirology. 2013; 10: 139. doi: 10.1186/1742-4690-10-139
47. Dugast AS, Chan Y, Hoffner M, et al. Lack of protection following passive transfer of polyclonal highly functional low-dose non-neutralizing antibodies. PLoS One. 2014; 9(5). doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0097229
48. Argiris A, Li S, Ghebremichael M, et al. Prognostic significance of human papillomavirus in recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer: an analysis of Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group trials. Ann Oncol. 2014; 25(7): 1410-1416. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdu167
49. Ghebremichael M. The Syndromic versus Laboratory Diagnosis of Sexually Transmitted Infections in Resource-Limited Settings. ISRN AIDS. 2014; 2014. doi: 10.1155/2014/103452
50. Siddiqi OK, Ghebremichael M, Dang X, et al. Molecular diagnosis of central nervous system opportunistic infections in HIV-infected Zambian adults. Clin Infect Dis. 2014; 58(12): 1771-1777. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciu191
51. Angin M, Sharma S, King M, et al. HIV-1 Infection Impairs Regulatory T-Cell Suppressive Capacity on a Per-Cell Basis. J Infect Dis. 2014; 210(6): 899-903. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiu188
52. Chung AW, Ghebremichael M, Robinson H, et al. Polyfunctional Fc-effector profiles mediated by IgG subclass selection distinguish RV144 and VAX003 vaccines. Sci Transl Med. 2014; 6(228). doi: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3007736
53. Selvaraj S, Ghebremichael M, Li M, et al. Antiretroviral therapy-induced mitochondrial toxicity: potential mechanisms beyond polymerase-γ inhibition. Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2014 Jul;96(1):110- 20. doi: 10.1038/clpt.2014.64
54. Chetty S, Porichis F, Govender P, et al. Co-infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis impairs HIV-specific CD8+ and CD4+ T cell functionality. Plos One. 2015; 10(3) doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0118654
55. Ghebremichael M. Joint Modeling of Correlated Binary Outcomes. HIV-1 and HSV-2 co- infection. Journal of Applied Statistics 2015. 42(10):2180-2191.
56. Anahtar M, Byrne E, Doherty K, et al. The genital microbiome modulates host inflammatory responses in women at high risk of HIV. Immunity. 2015; 42(5): 965-976.
57. Ndhlovu Z, Kamya P, Mewalal N, et al. The Magnitude and kinetics of CD8+ T cell activation during hyperacute HIV infection impact viral set point. Immunity. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2015.08.012
58. Ranasinghe S, Soghoian DZ, Lindqvist M, Ghebremichael M, et al. HIV-1 Antibody Neutralization Breadth Is Associated with Enhanced HIV-Specific CD4+ T Cell Responses. J Virol. 2015; 90(5): 2208-2220. doi: 10.1128/JVI.02278-15
59. Byrne EH, Anahtar MN, Cohen KE, et al. Association between injectable progestin-only contraceptives and HIV acquisition and HIV target cell frequency in the female genital tract in South African women: a prospective cohort study. Lancet Infect Dis. 2016; 16(4): 441-448. doi: 10.1016/S1473-3099(15)00429-6
60. Sips M, Krykbaeva M, Diefenbach TJ, et al. Fc receptor-mediated phagocytosis in tissues as a potent mechanism for preventive and therapeutic HIV vaccine strategies. Mucosal Immunol. 2016; 1584-1595 doi: 10.1038/mi.2016.12
61. Monaco CL, Gootenberg DB, Zhao G, et al. Altered Virome and Bacterial Microbiome in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Associated Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. Cell Host Microbe. 2016; 19(3): 311-22. doi: 10.1016/j.chom.2016.02.011
62. Abers MS, Ghebremichael MS, Timmons AK, Warren HS, Poznansky MC, Vyas JM. A Critical Reappraisal of Prolonged Neutropenia as a Risk Factor for Invasive Pulmonary Aspergillosis. Open Forum Infect Dis. 2016; 3(1). doi: 10.1093/ofid/ofw036
63. Tully DC, Ogilvie CB, Batorsky RE, et al. Differences in the Selection Bottleneck between Modes of Sexual Transmission Influence the Genetic Composition of the HIV-1 Founder Virus. PLoS Pathog. 2016; 12(5): e1005619. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1005619
64. Deruaz M, Moldt B, Le KM, et al. Protection of Humanized Mice From Repeated Intravaginal HIV Challenge by Passive Immunization: A Model for Studying the Efficacy of Neutralizing Antibodies In Vivo. J Infect Dis. 2016; 214(4): 612-616. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiw203
65. Paintsil E, Martin R, Goldenthal A, Bhandari S, Andiman W, Ghebremichael M. Frequent Episodes of Detectable Viremia in HIV Treatment-Experienced Children is Associated with a Decline in CD4+ T-cells Over Time. J AIDS Clin Res. 2016; 7(4). pii: 565. doi: 10.4172/2155-6113.1000565
66. Shasha D, Karel D, Angiuli O, et al. Elite controller CD8+ T cells exhibit comparable viral inhibition capacity, but better sustained effector properties compared to chronic progressors. J Leukoc Biol. 2016. pii: jlb.4A0915-422R. doi: 10.1189/jlb.4A0915-422R
67. Sips M, Liu Q, Draghi M, Hum Immunol. 2016. pii: S0198-8859(16)30405-0. doi: 10.1016/j.humimm.2016.08.004