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Immunology of Infectious Diseases

The battle between pathogens and the host immune defenses has raged for thousands of years.  The immune system has developed a variety of approaches to controlling viral and bacterial infection, which range from the direct killing of pathogens to elaborating cytokines that inhibit replication.  Pathogens have been countered by developing a variety of immune evasion mechanisms that inhibit cytokine function and prevent immune recognition of infected cells.  Faculty and student efforts to define and characterize these opposing mechanisms will undoubtedly lead to improved treatment of infectious diseases ranging from AIDS and parasitic infections to sexually transmitted diseases and the common cold.

Participating Faculty and Labs

John Alcorn, Ph.D.
T cell immunity, host defense, epithelial cell biology, and lung physiology; Immunologic mechanisms of severe and steroid insensitive asthma

Simon Barratt-Boyes, B.V.Sc., Ph.D. 
Development of a preventative vaccine and immunotherapy against HIV infection

Sarah Gaffen, Ph.D.
Defining innate and adaptive immunity to fungal infections caused by Candida albicans and related species.

JoAnne L. Flynn, Ph.D. 
Immunology and pathogenesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

William B. Klimstra, Ph.D.
Animal models of arbovirus infection; rational vaccine design and immune responses to vaccines; role of innate immune responses in controlling arbovirus disease

Doug Reed, Ph.D.
Vaccines and correlates of protection for pneumonic tularemia; aerosol infection of animals with highly pathogenic viruses and bacteria

Saumendra N. Sarkar, Ph.D.
Innate Immunity; signaling process involved in cytokine production after virus infection; develop modulators for signaling pathways

Anthony St. Leger, Ph.D.
Viral immunology; T-cell activation and function