The immunological memory induced by pathogens or vaccines can provide protection against future infection. Memory T and B cells help assure a fast, effective and specific response upon encounter with the pathogen. Pathogen infected cells present peptides via MHC molecules to T and B cell pools. Mechanism of antigen presentation is key to a protective immune response. The quality of this response depends on the diversity of the peptide pool. Moreover, the antigen presentation via MHC represents a pathogen signature that defines the T-cell response to a given infection.
By identifying the profile of peptides presented at different stages of an infection, we will be able to select the most relevant peptides that induce the highest and broadest activation of T and B cells against a particular pathogen, thus promoting a long and lasting protection.
With the aim of discovering new and unexplored peptides presented by infected cells, the main focus of my research is the qualitative and quantitative identification of the MHC bound peptide pool, by mass spectrometry, in the major infectious diseases, malaria and tuberculosis. The newly identified and validated antigenic peptides will be studied as potential new vaccine candidates, to be included in prime/boost based vaccines.
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Identification of antigens presented by MHC for vaccines against tuberculosis.
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Author Correction: The influence of haemoglobin and iron on in vitro mycobacterial growth inhibition assays.
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Regulation of mycobacterial infection by macrophage Gch1 and tetrahydrobiopterin
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Mycobacterium tuberculosis Modulates miR-106b-5p to Control Cathepsin S Expression Resulting in Higher Pathogen Survival and Poor T-Cell Activation
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The influence of haemoglobin and iron on in vitro mycobacterial growth inhibition assays
Tanner R. et al, (2017), Scientific Reports, 7