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Garcia lab: Immunotherapy augments antiretroviral therapy to target persistent HIV

July 9, 2014

Victor Garcia’s lab addresses the longstanding problem of HIV persistence in a new PLOS Pathogens paper that takes advantage of their bone marrow/liver/thymus (BLT) humanized mouse system. They combine antiretroviral therapy with an immunotoxin designed to target the conserved CD4 binding site of HIV-1 gp120, and they show a dramatic reduction in persistent virus throughout … Continued

Dangl and Grant labs: Comparative transcriptomics to understand the evolution of Pseudomonas syringae virulence

July 9, 2014

RNAseq analysis is combined with phylogenetics in this new PLOS Pathogens paper from the labs of Jeff Dangl and Sarah Grant. By characterizing the HrpL regulon across six diverse strains of P. syringae, they identify novel putative virulence factors and two novel type III effector families. See the article at the link below. http://www.plospathogens.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.ppat.1003807;jsessionid=36F2FDBCC0829F3F478B5F12B4C77DCE

de Silva and Baric labs: Molecular determinants of immunity to dengue

July 9, 2014

The current online Early Edition of PNAS features a collaboration between the labs of Aravinda de Silva and Ralph Baric that has broad implications for designing and improving vaccines for viral infections. They demonstrate that a specific region on the viral surface (the envelope domain I/II hinge) is the primary target for serotype-specific neutralizing antibodies … Continued

Merry Christmas: M&I gets a boost in the rankings

July 8, 2014

It’s Christmas morning and I’m happy to relay a nice surprise that brings 2013 to a satisfying close, thanks to newly released data on NIH awards. Based on current NIH funding levels, our Department now ranks 8th among all microbiology/immunology departments at medical schools. And in comparison with these departments at our peer institutions (public … Continued