Project: Evading the innate immune response; the norovirus way
The innate immune response is our greatest controlling factor against norovirus infection, yet 700 million infections still occur annually. In this project we will investigate how noroviruses can evade our innate immune response, particularly the induction of interferon and the downstream signalling events. We aim to identify the mechanism(s) noroviruses employ to manipulate the host and identify the viral protein(s) responsible for these actions. These findings will reveal targets that can be later pursued for the development of antiviral therapies.
The Mackenzie group investigates how viruses interact with the cells they infect. In particular the molecular and cellular processes that are manipulated by flaviviruses (dengue, Zika and West Nile viruses) and noroviruses for their own gain. We aim to understand how the intracellular events of virus replication result in innate immune evasion and ultimately how the consequences of infection result in a diseased state. Answering these questions will guide and inform us of areas for antiviral therapeutic development.