The role of the interaction of the CMV m11 immune evasion molecule with CD44 in viral pathogenesis [ 2005 - 2007 ]

Also known as: How cytomegalovirus reduces host immunity by interfering with inflammatory responses.

Research Grant

[Cite as]

Researchers: A/Pr Anthony Scalzo (Principal investigator) ,  Prof Mariapia Degli-Esposti

Brief description Herpesviruses can cause infections that persist for the lifetime of the host. They have evolved many mechanisms to elude the host's immune response that would otherwise eliminate them. One memberof the herpesvirus family that is particularly adept at avoiding host immunity is cytomegalovirus. This virus, while not causing symptoms in healthy individuals, is a significant cause of disease and mortality in individuals with suppressed immune systems such as transplant and AIDS patients, and in the fetus which has a poorly developed immune system. In the current project we will explore at a molecular level how a virus-encoded molecule called m11 interferes with the functions of a cellular receptor called CD44 that has a range of cell functions including cell migration, activation and proliferation and signal transduction. The interaction of m11 with CD44 modifies cell migration and is likely to affect cell activation. Defining how m11 mediates its affects will allow us to define strategies to develop potential antiviral therapies. As CD44 is also involed in contributing to a range of diseases where inappropriate inflammation develops it may be that m11, or derivatives of it, could be harnessed to ameliorate these inflammatory diseases.

Funding Amount $AUD 457,500.00

Funding Scheme NHMRC Project Grants

Notes Standard Project Grant

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