Research Interests: Infectious Diseases
Research Description: I am currently working on a project that involves the arenavirus JunÌn virus (JUNV), the causative agent responsible for the Argentine Hemorrhagic Fever. My goal is to develop a mouse model for JUNV infection that can be used under BSL2 conditions to study arenavirus activation of the innate immune system. I have shown that infection of mouse macrophages with Candid 1 caused the induction of both TNF- and IFN-. I am also currently using mouse macrophages with mutations in various innate immune response genes to determine which innate immune pathway (TLR, RIG-I, etc.) is involved in this response. Once these experiments are accomplished in cultured cells, I will study infection of different mutant mice with Candid 1. This project will allow further understanding about the innate cellular responses to JUNV and how this virus causes pathogenesis in vivo.