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Talks related to infectious diseases
Updated: 1 hour 17 min ago

Wed 17 Aug 14:30: naRNA is a canonical neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) component and novel inflammation-amplifying composite DAMP Prof Alex Weber, University of Tübingen, Germany. Hosted by Prof Nick Gay

Wed, 10/08/2022 - 08:04
naRNA is a canonical neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) component and novel inflammation-amplifying composite DAMP

Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) have emerged as a key feature of cellular innate immunity mediated by polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs), the primary leukocyte population in humans. Forming web-like structures composed of DNA , histones, and antimicrobial proteins, NETs trap and kill microbial invaders and thus enhance host defense. However, they have also been linked to inflammatory states, e.g. in atherosclerosis or psoriasis. Whilst DNA has been in focus as a primary structural component of NETs, we here characterize naRNA (NET-associated RNA ), as a new canonical, abundant, and largely unexplored NET component. naRNA decorated all types of NETs in complex with the antimicrobial peptide LL37 . In fact, naRNA was preassociated with LL37 intracellularly as a ‘composite’ danger-associated molecular pattern (DAMP) prior to neutrophil activation. Externalized, naRNA propagated NET formation in naïve PMN , dependent on TLR8 in humans and Tlr13 in mice, in vitro and in vivo. naRNA-TLR8/Tlr13 signaling contributed significantly to the highly sensitive pro-inflammatory response of both tissue cells, like keratinocytes, and other immune cell types, such as macrophages. Those responses could be blocked by inhibition and genetic ablation of RNA receptors or RNase treatment. Importantly, in vivo naRNA strongly drove skin inflammation whereas genetic ablation of RNA sensing drastically ameliorated skin inflammation in the imiquimod psoriasis model. Our data highlight naRNA as a novel composite DAMP signaling and amplifying neutrophil activation. Moreover, naRNA emerges as the likely driver of inflammation in conditions previously linked to NETs and extracellular RNA , suggesting blockade of TLRmediated RNA sensing as potential new intervention target.

Prof Alex Weber, University of Tübingen, Germany. Hosted by Prof Nick Gay

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Fri 03 Feb 17:30: The Closeting of Secrets

Tue, 09/08/2022 - 18:37
The Closeting of Secrets

Abstract not available

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Wed 17 Aug 14:30: naRNA is a canonical neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) component and novel inflammation-amplifying composite DAMP

Tue, 09/08/2022 - 15:40
naRNA is a canonical neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) component and novel inflammation-amplifying composite DAMP

Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) have emerged as a key feature of cellular innate immunity mediated by polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs), the primary leukocyte population in humans. Forming web-like structures composed of DNA , histones, and antimicrobial proteins, NETs trap and kill microbial invaders and thus enhance host defense. However, they have also been linked to inflammatory states, e.g. in atherosclerosis or psoriasis. Whilst DNA has been in focus as a primary structural component of NETs, we here characterize naRNA (NET-associated RNA ), as a new canonical, abundant, and largely unexplored NET component. naRNA decorated all types of NETs in complex with the antimicrobial peptide LL37 . In fact, naRNA was preassociated with LL37 intracellularly as a ‘composite’ danger-associated molecular pattern (DAMP) prior to neutrophil activation. Externalized, naRNA propagated NET formation in naïve PMN , dependent on TLR8 in humans and Tlr13 in mice, in vitro and in vivo. naRNA-TLR8/Tlr13 signaling contributed significantly to the highly sensitive pro-inflammatory response of both tissue cells, like keratinocytes, and other immune cell types, such as macrophages.Those responses could be blocked by inhibition and genetic ablation of RNA receptors or RNase treatment. Importantly, in vivo naRNA strongly drove skin inflammation whereas genetic ablation of RNA sensing drastically ameliorated skin inflammation in the imiquimod psoriasis model. Our data highlight naRNA as a novel composite DAMP signaling and amplifying neutrophil activation. Moreover, naRNA emerges as the likely driver of inflammation in conditions previously linked to NETs and extracellular RNA , suggesting blockade of TLRmediated RNA sensing as potential new intervention target.

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Thu 09 Mar 16:00: TBC This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

Mon, 08/08/2022 - 15:34
TBC

This talk will be broadcasted via Zoom. Please use this link to gain access.

This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

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Wed 30 Nov 16:00: Defining genetic and environmental determinants of malaria transmission This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

Mon, 08/08/2022 - 15:31
Defining genetic and environmental determinants of malaria transmission

This talk will be broadcasted via Zoom. Please use this link to gain access.

This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

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Fri 09 Sep 16:00: Immunotherapy: A piece of the puzzle for treating brain cancer Associate Professor Misty Jenkins, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, Melbourne. Hosted by Prof Gillian Griffiths

Tue, 12/07/2022 - 10:39
Immunotherapy: A piece of the puzzle for treating brain cancer

Abstract not available

Associate Professor Misty Jenkins, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, Melbourne. Hosted by Prof Gillian Griffiths

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Wed 20 Jul 16:00: One health, many challenges no silver bullet.

Mon, 11/07/2022 - 11:34
One health, many challenges no silver bullet.

The University of Minnesota (UMN) is a land grant higher education institution that is globally recognized for its work on policy and public health. The Center for Animal Health and Food Safety (CAHFS) at the UMN College of Veterinary Medicine is an OIE collaborating center for capacity building and an FAO reference center for veterinary public health. The objective of the presentation will be to provide an overview of relevant research, educational, and outreach activities on applied epidemiology, veterinary public health, and food animal population medicine at CAHFS and other relevant groups at the UMN CVM .

Bio: Andres M. Perez (DVM, PhD) is a veterinary epidemiologist, originally from Argentina. He is a Professor, Endowed Chair of Global Animal Health and Food Security; and Director of the Center for Animal Health and Food Safety (CAHFS) at the College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota (UMN). He is an Honorary Professor at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain, a Collaborating scientist/advisor to the USDA /ARS Foreign Animal Disease Research Unit at the Plum Island Animal Disease Research Center, and has been awarded an American Veterinary Epidemiology Society (AVES) Honorary Diploma for 2021. He has led educational, outreach, and research activities in >40 countries, supervised, co-supervised, or mentored >50 graduate students in the field of animal health and food safety, and published >230 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals. He also serves as Chief editor of the Frontiers in Veterinary Science journal.

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Wed 13 Jul 16:00: Introducing JUNE

Fri, 08/07/2022 - 15:08
Introducing JUNE

In this talk I introduce the JUNE model for the simulation of infectious diseases transmitted by human interactions such as Covid-19. Examples for its applications include the spread of COVID -19 in England and in Cox’s Bazaar, one of the largest refugee camps in the world.

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Wed 06 Jul 16:00: Identifying sources of transmission for zoonotic mosquito-borne viruses

Tue, 05/07/2022 - 10:01
Identifying sources of transmission for zoonotic mosquito-borne viruses

Many mosquito-borne pathogens that cause disease in humans, like dengue, are transmitted between humans. However, there are at least 12 mosquito-borne viruses that are transmitted between other animals, for which humans are incidentally infected. These viruses are difficult to control; human vaccination alone cannot eliminate them. Furthermore, because zoonotic mosquito-borne viruses are usually transmitted by multiple host and vector species, they can be present across a range of ecological contexts. In turn, ecological context influences transmission dynamics and risk to humans. The ability to target control within ecological contexts that present sources of onward transmission should increase impact. I will discuss three broad themes of importance for identifying sources of transmission for this group of viruses: heterogeneity, scale, and noise. With respect to these themes, I will highlight current research gaps in the modelling literature and give specific examples from two new projects which aim to address these gaps by integrating empirical studies and modelling for Japanese encephalitis and Rift Valley fever.

  • Speaker: Dr Jennifer Lord, Department of Vector Biology Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine
  • Wednesday 06 July 2022, 16:00-17:00
  • Venue: Zoom.
  • Series: Worms and Bugs; organiser: Dr Ciara Dangerfield.

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Thu 07 Jul 16:00: Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome economization for pathogenesis: “More from less for more” Room changed - will be Seminar Rooms 2/3, Pathology Block, Department of Veterinary Medicine.

Fri, 01/07/2022 - 10:46
Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome economization for pathogenesis: “More from less for more”

Abstract: Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M.tb) is the deadliest bacterial pathogen known to humanity causing the disease TB, taking the largest toll of human lives globally with a person dying every 15-20 seconds despite the fact that TB is completely curable if diagnosed timely and treated properly. This problem is further compounded by the development of drug resistance, to the extent of total drug resistance, HIV AIDS co-infection and the accompanying TB-IRIS and the impending impact of the emerging diabetes epidemic and of late the COVID -19 pandemic. M.tb has undergone reductive evolution, over millions of years, into a very slim and trim genomic and functional architecture. Not only has it shed much of its genome, but has balanced this genome deficit by resorting to very intelligent survival strategies such as gene co option, moon lighting and molecular mimicry.

Room changed - will be Seminar Rooms 2/3, Pathology Block, Department of Veterinary Medicine.

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Wed 29 Jun 16:00: Critical weaknesses in shielding strategies for COVID-19

Fri, 24/06/2022 - 09:35
Critical weaknesses in shielding strategies for COVID-19

The COVID -19 pandemic, caused by the coronavirus SARS -CoV-2, has led to a wide range of non-pharmaceutical interventions being implemented around the world to curb transmission. However, the economic and social costs of some of these measures, especially lockdowns, has been high. An alternative and widely discussed public health strategy for the COVID -19 pandemic would have been to `shield’ those most vulnerable to COVID -19 (minimising their contacts with others), while allowing infection to spread among lower risk individuals with the aim of reaching herd immunity. In this talk we will retrospectively explore the effectiveness of such a strategy using a stochastic SEIR framework, showing that even under the unrealistic assumption of perfect shielding, hospitals would have been rapidly overwhelmed with many deaths among lower risk individuals. Crucially, even a small (20%) reduction in the effectiveness of shielding would have likely led to a large increase (>150%) in the number of deaths compared to perfect shielding. Our findings demonstrate that shielding the vulnerable while allowing infections to spread among the wider population would not have been a viable public health strategy for COVID -19 and is unlikely to be effective for future pandemics.

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Wed 15 Jun 16:00: What activity types posed the greatest risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection for a university community?

Tue, 14/06/2022 - 09:31
What activity types posed the greatest risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection for a university community?

Although there was widespread belief that dense contact networks within universities might facilitate rapid spread of SARS -CoV-2 amongst an unvaccinated population, the relative risk of infection during different activities of university members on and off-campus was unknown. We use linked saliva-based asymptomatic PCR testing and detailed contact survey data to explore whether contacts in different settings visited by university members may present higher risk for infection during September 2020-March 2021. We use a Bayesian approach to compare models for infection risk based on different definitions of contact and present a multiple component analysis demonstrating how the adoption of protective behaviours can vary by setting.

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Wed 15 Jun 16:00: Finding a needle in a haystack: Genome-wide analyses of anthelmintic resistance in helminths of livestock This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

Thu, 09/06/2022 - 15:05
Finding a needle in a haystack: Genome-wide analyses of anthelmintic resistance in helminths of livestock

Control of parasitic infections in animals and humans currently relies on mass drug administration of a limited number of anthelmintics. However, this is not sustainable due to the emergence and spread of anthelmintic resistance. Haemonchus contortus is a highly pathogenic gastrointestinal nematode of small ruminants, which is becoming increasingly difficult to control due to multi-drug resistance. The mechanisms underlying anthelmintic resistance are generally poorly understood, with studies comparing resistant and sensitive parasites confounded by high levels of genetic diversity within and between and populations. To overcome this, we crossed a well-characterised multi-drug resistant isolate of H. contortus with a drug susceptible isolate to study resistance to three major anthelmintic classes, while controlling for background variation. In this talk I will focus on our genomic and transcriptomic analyses of ivermectin resistance and describe ongoing work investigating the evolution of multi-drug resistance in H. contortus and related parasites.

This talk will be broadcasted via Zoom. Please use this link to gain access.

This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

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Wed 30 Nov 16:00: Defining genetic and environmental determinants of malaria transmission This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

Thu, 09/06/2022 - 12:03
Defining genetic and environmental determinants of malaria transmission

This talk will be broadcasted via Zoom. Please use this link to gain access.

This is a hybrid talk. You can attend in person or via zoom. See abstract for details

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