Article in the Spotlight

By Barnaby Nicolas, MSIS

In our monthly “Article Spotlight” series, we’re showcasing achievements of Mount Sinai faculty and researchers using Altmetrics. This month, we’re looking at an article co-written by Dr. Miriam Mered, MD, PhD, Professor, Oncological Sciences and Professor, Medicine, Hematology and Medical Oncology at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Citation: Naik S, Bouladoux N, Linehan JL, Han SJ, Harrison OJ, Merad M, et al. Commensal-dendritic-cell interaction specifies a unique protective skin immune signature. Nature. 2015;520(7545):104-8.


Article Summary: This study examine the nature of the antigen presenting cells involved in the dialogue between the immune system and skin commensals. The researchers find that defined skin commensal bacteria elicit a dermal dendritic-cell-dependent, long-lasting and commensal-specific CD8+ T-cell response, while preserving tissue homeostasis. The CD8+ T cells are shown to enhance innate protection against a fungal pathogen.

BACKGROUND: The skin represents the primary interface between the host and the environment. This organ is also home to trillions of microorganisms that play an important role in tissue homeostasis and local immunity. Skin microbial communities are highly diverse and can be remodelled over time or in response to environmental challenges. How, in the context of this complexity, individual commensal microorganisms may differentially modulate skin immunity and the consequences of these responses for tissue physiology remains unclear. Here we show that defined commensals dominantly affect skin immunity and identify the cellular mediators involved in this specification. In particular, colonization with Staphylococcus epidermidis induces IL-17A(+) CD8(+) T cells that home to the epidermis, enhance innate barrier immunity and limit pathogen invasion. Commensal-specific T-cell responses result from the coordinated action of skin-resident dendritic cell subsets and are not associated with inflammation, revealing that tissue-resident cells are poised to sense and respond to alterations in microbial communities. This interaction may represent an evolutionary means by which the skin immune system uses fluctuating commensal signals to calibrate barrier immunity and provide heterologous protection against invasive pathogens. These findings reveal that the skin immune landscape is a highly dynamic environment that can be rapidly and specifically remodelled by encounters with defined commensals, findings that have profound implications for our understanding of tissue-specific immunity and pathologies.

URL to this article on PlumX

Dr. Merad’s profile

Be Smart – Protect Your Login Info

Part of the way the Levy Library support the educational, research and patient care activities of the faculty, students and staff of the Mount Sinai Medical Centers is by providing access to high quality electronic biomedical information resources, such as eJournals like The Lancet, The New England Journal of Medicine and Nature.


In order to access library resources, our users must use the same network ID credentials they use to access resources that contain not only protected health information (i.e., EPIC), but also sensitive personal information (i.e., webmail, Sinai Central). It might be tempting to share network ID credentials with non-affiliated colleagues or friends, but these credentials with unauthorized users puts our relationships with service providers at risk and may result in access to resources being terminated. That means that one person violating our license terms could potentially create major repercussions for the rest of the health system. If a licensing agreement is violated, the publisher may remove the Mount Sinai community’s access to their journals and books.  Publishers price access to their content by the number of users and usage. Sharing passwords increases usage costs beyond what the library can pay, resulting in subscription cuts and unfilled requests. Additionally, sharing network ID credentials with unauthorized users is a direct violation of Mount Sinai IT Policy (IT Policy # 7 for Password Usage) and may result in disciplinary action. 

Remember, be smart – protect your login info!

Social Media for Scientists – Register now!

By Robin O’Hanlon, MIS

We want you to join us for Social Media for Scientists!


This interactive, 90 minute workshop is open to all Mount Sinai Health System employees. If you’re a scientist, work with scientists, or just want to develop a better understanding of social media, this workshop is for you!

Sessions will be taught by Dr. Gali Halevi, MLS, PhD and Robin O’Hanlon, MIS.

Register here –


Complete Medical Board Specialties now available through Board Vitals

Levy Library is pleased to announce that we have secured access to the complete Medical Board Specialties available through Board Vitals.  This resource is available across the Mount Sinai Health System to residents and faculty at any MSHS site, including affiliates.


In addition, Board Vitals includes CME and MOC (maintenance of certification) credits for practicing physicians who need to meet these requirements. There is also an administrative function for program directors who want to create and email exams for their residents or track usage.

To access Board Vitals, library users should go directly to:

  • If you are off-campus, you will be asked to sign into the Library using their network credentials.
  • A free registration to Board Vitals is then required using a Mount Sinai email address.  (Currently, one of the following domains must be used:;;;

Residency and program directors can also have administrative access to track resident usage and use an exam creating feature where they can create and email exams out to residents, etc. Should any directors be interested in this, they should register for Board Vitals first and then email

Additional general information about Board Vitals is available here:

For more information and for a complete list of current specialties included in our new access, please email


Hostos Community College students visit Levy Library

By Robin O’Hanlon, MIS

On Friday, June 10, Hostos Community College students participating in a Summer Research Institute visited Levy Library. Instructor and HCC Librarian Lisa Tappeiner decided to schedule the trip for her students in order to expose them to the innovative research taking place at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and to learn the basics of a key biomedical research resource, PubMed.


HCC Students pictured with Levy Librarian Robin O’Hanlon (front row, middle)

First, the HCC students met with ISMMS Medical Students Anthony Bui (1st Year) and Kamini Doobay (4th Year). The medical students shared their experience on doing research and life as a medical student. Both students emphasized the importance of finding strong mentors. In addition to their MDs, Kamini and Anthony are both pursuing Masters in Science in Clinical Research through the Clinical Research Education Program.


Next, students were treated to a presentation by Medical Illustrators Jill Gregory, MFA, CFI (Manager, Academic Illustration) and Christopher Smith, MA (Academic Medical Illustrator). Jill & Chris shared how their unique service services the education and research needs of ISMMS.

Hostos Visit1

Students then were giving a PubMed Basics lesson by Levy Librarian Robin O’Hanlon, MIS.

The visit ended with a trip to Dr. Scott Russo’s neuroscience lab. Post Doctoral Fellow Catherine Menard gave a tour of the lab and explained how the team at Dr. Russo’s lab uses a combination of transgenic mice, immune cell transplantation, optogenetics/electrophysiology, viral mediated gene transfer, behavioral models and molecular methods to understand how the brain and body adapts to stress to control pathological behaviors in depression and anxiety. HCC students even got a peak at a high powered confocal microscope.


Thanks to all who made this visit a success!