Charles Evavold

Charles Evavold, PhD

Principal Investigator

Core Member and Early Independence Fellow

Ragon Institute of Mass General, MIT, and Harvard


Harvard University


400 TS 758

Synthetic immunity and cell death regulation

Research Overview

The Evavold lab studies fundamental cellular decision making towards different cell fates using cell death programs as a model system. We have a particular interest in the intersection of microbiology and metabolism with impact on host cell survival or death.

Regulated cell death can serve different functions within the innate immune system. For example, immunologically silent cell death can remove unnecessary, damaged, or pre-malignant cells during development and homeostasis. Alternatively, during the early containment of a pathogen, inflammatory cell death can alert the immune system to a foreign invader. However, inflammatory cell death can become pathogenic during systemic infection or contribute to sterile autoimmunity and chronic inflammation. Conversely, acquired resistance to cell death programs can promote cancer progression or resistance to chemotherapies. Dysfunction of cell death regulation may underlie much of the pathology related to human diseases. Thus, we aim to uncover novel regulation in these processes using precision screening that combines genomic or chemical perturbations with synthetic biology models of discrete signaling nodes.


Dr. Charlie Evavold received his PhD in Immunology from Harvard University. He received his BS in Physics and Astronomy with a double major in Chemistry from Emory University. Charlie is one of the inaugural Ragon Early Independence Fellows on the basic science track.

Selected Publications

Gasdermin D pore-forming activity is redox-sensitive

Pascal Devant, Elvira Boršić, Elsy M Ngwa, Haopeng Xiao, Edward T Chouchani, Jay R Thiagarajah, Iva Hafner-Bratkovič, Charles L Evavold, Jonathan C Kagan

Cell Reports 2023, 42(1):112008 Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site

Putting the p (hosphor) in pyroptosis

Shivangi Rastogi, Charles L Evavold, Volker Briken

Cell Host & Microbe 2022, Volume 30, Issue 12, p1650-1652 Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site

Glycine inhibits NINJ1 membrane clustering to suppress plasma membrane rupture in cell death

Jazlyn P Borges, Ragnhild SR Sætra, Allen Volchuk, Marit Bugge, Pascal Devant, Bjørnar Sporsheim, Bridget R Kilburn, Charles L Evavold, Jonathan C Kagan, Neil M Goldenberg, Trude Helen Flo, Benjamin Ethan Steinberg

Elife 2022, 11:e78609 Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site

Biting the hand that feeds: Metabolic determinants of cell fate during infection

Isabella R Fraschilla, Charles L Evavold

Frontiers in Immunology 2022, 13:923024. Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site

Diverse Control Mechanisms of the Interleukin-1 Cytokine Family

Charles L Evavold, Jonathan C. Kagan

Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology 2022, 10:910983 Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site

Control of gasdermin D oligomerization and pyroptosis by the Ragulator-Rag-mTORC1 pathway

Charles L Evavold, Iva Hafner-Bratkovič, Pascal Devant, Jasmin M D’Andrea, Elsy M Ngwa, Elvira Boršic, John G Doench, Martin W LaFleur, Arlene H Sharpe, Jay R Thiagarajah, Jonathan C Kagan

Cell 2021, Volume 184, Issue 17, Pages 4495-4511.e19 Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site

HDAC6 mediates an aggresome-like mechanism for NLRP3 and pyrin inflammasome activation

Venkat Giri Magupalli, Roberto Negro, Yuzi Tian, Arthur V Hauenstein, Giuseppe Di Caprio, Wesley Skillern, Qiufang Deng, Pontus Orning, Hasan B Alam, Zoltan Maliga, Humayun Sharif, Jun Jacob Hu, Charles L Evavold, Jonathan C Kagan, Florian I Schmidt, Katherine A Fitzgerald, Tom Kirchhausen, Yongqing Li, Hao Wu

Science 2020, Vol 369, Issue 6510 Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site

Inflammasomes: threat-assessment organelles of the innate immune system

Charles L Evavold, Jonathan C Kagan

Immunity 2019, Volume 51, Issue 4, p609–624 Download PDF PubMed Read on Journal Site