Respiratory Virus Infection of the Inflamed Lung: Does Increased Proteolytic Activity Impact the Severity of Virus Infection?

 

Trainee:

Rachael Liesman

Liesman

Research Mentor:

Dr. Raymond Pickles, PhD

Pickles

Clinical Co-Mentor;

Dr. Richard Boucher, MD

boucher
Project Description:

Rachael is investigating the role of respiratory viruses in precipitating acute exacerbations of preexisting chronic lung diseases such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Cystic Fibrosis (CF) and asthma. Using a model of human ciliated airway epithelium (HAE), she intends to determine the requirement of extracellular proteases for virus infection and test whether increasted proteolytic activity supplied by addition of CF or COPD patient samples to HAE will potentiate the infectivity and/or consequences of infection by specific viruses.