Identifying novel subsets of immune cells that control cytomegalovirus following transplantation

Research Opportunity
PhD, Masters by Research, Honours
Department
Microbiology and Immunology
Location
Doherty Institute
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Lucy Sullivan lcsull@unimelb.edu.au (03) 8344 5708 Personal web page
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Michelle Yong
Dr Sanda Stankovic sandas@unimelb.edu.au

Summary We wish to investigate the role of immune cells in controlling cytomegalovirus (CMV) following transplantation. We anticipate our research can lead to improved diagnostic tests that provide a more accurate and comprehensive assessment of CMV immunity.

Project Details

Transplantation is a life-saving procedure for people with end-stage organ failure or malignant blood cancers. However, post-transplant immunosuppressive medications, required to prevent rejection, result in impaired ability to control infections. In particular, the control of cytomegalovirus (CMV) is one of the most significant hurdles to successful transplantation. Anti-viral pre-emptive therapies are routinely used, often for an uncertain duration and frequently causing bone marrow or renal toxicity. CMV-immune monitoring assays can optimise the duration of anti-viral prophylaxis, by giving an indication of when the individual patient has sufficient CMV-immunity to prevent disease. However, our preliminary data indicates that several important immune cell populations are overlooked in CMV immune monitoring assays. We now wish to investigate the role of these immune cells in controlling CMV following transplantation. We anticipate our research can lead to improved diagnostic tests that provide a more accurate and comprehensive assessment of CMV immunity. Moreover, we may be able to harness novel immune cells for focused therapies with a view to reducing CMV and prolonging survival following transplantation.



Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology

School Research Themes

Infection & Immunity



Research Opportunities

PhD, Masters by Research, Honours
Students who are interested in joining this project will need to consider their elegibility as well as other requirements before contacting the supervisor of this research

Graduate Research application

Honours application

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact a supervisor.

Department

Microbiology and Immunology

Research Group / Unit / Centre

Brooks laboratory: Innate immunity; anti-viral immunity

Research Node

Doherty Institute

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