Mycobacterial Research Programme
Lab head: Dr Bernadette Saunders
Location: Centenary Institute
TEC and host defence against intracellular pathogens.
Primary supervisor: Bernadette Saunders
Diseases caused by intracellular pathogens, such as tuberculosis and Listeria, are major caused of mortality worldwide. A better understanding of the factors that regulate immunity to these pathogens is urgently required to aid in the rational design of new treatment options. We have recently identified a mouse with a single nucleotide polymorphisms in the TEC gene that leads to increased susceptibility of this strain to TB infection. Tec family kinases are involved in the intracellular signalling mechanisms of cytokine receptors and other lymphocyte surface antigens. They are key players in the regulation of multiple immune functions.
Aim: This project will dissect the role of Tec in regulating immunity to intracellular infections.
In this project we will compare the growth of Listeria, TB or BCG infection in wildtype and TEC mutant mice at multiple time points. We will examine the host response, T cell activation and the inflammatory response. The response of macrophages to infection, both in vivo and in vitro will be examined, and compared with the expression and function of TEC in human macrophages This project will give an honours student experience in both cellular and molecular techniques. Including, isolation and growth of human and murine macrophages, animal handling and infection, measurement of bacterial growth and analysis of cell activation through; confocal microscopy, flow cytometry, ELISA, biological assays measuring macrophage activation and changes in gene expression using QRT-PCR.
Contact: Bernadette Saunders
Discipline: Infectious diseases and Immunology
Co-supervisors: Jennifer Huch
Keywords: Infectious Diseases, Macrophages, T-cells
Contact: Email Bernadette Saunders