Unravelling the molecular architecture of killer T cells in disease (Masters option available)

Unravelling the molecular architecture of killer T cells in disease (Masters option available)

Project details

This project aims to understand how CD8+ T cells make decisions make decisions in response to different pathogens and so generate the diverse types of cells necessary to orchestrate immune protection. The fate of the T cell depends on the type and level of antigen together with extrinsic signals that, when integrated, result in a protective T cell. Exactly how this is achieved is not yet clear. This project will endeavor to elucidate key factors involved in this process.

We will use novel tools and approaches to identify key regulators of T cells function essential to immune homeostasis in health and disease. These include the use of specialised in vivo models, flow cytometry, and RNAseq analyses of the microbiome. We also aim to capture data of single cells in their natural habitat performing their daily function using a combination of cutting edge two photon microscopy and fluorescent protein technology. 

This project would suit a student with an interest in both molecular immunology and bioinformatics. It may be undertaken as a PhD or a Masters student.

About our research group

Our work aims to understand how the immune system responds to infections including viruses, bacteria and parasites.

We are elucidating how different types of immune cells develop, and what factors influences their decision to become one type of immune cell or another. We also aim to watch these processes in action in situ. Seeing first hand how an immune cell protects us from infection provides a vast amount of data about how this process is regulated and the consequences for an individual when they are compromised.

Understanding how the body deals with pathogens will give clues about how to enhance protective immunity. Our goal is to discover new therapies that boost our immune system to protect against infection.



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