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VZV interactions with human ganglionic cells


Varicella zoster virus interactions with human ganglionic cells


Associate Professor Allison Abendroth.

Research location

Camperdown - Central Clinical School

Program type



Recently we have performed extensive immunohistochemical studies on post-mortem human ganglia sections, collected from patients who at the time of death had herpes zoster to characterize the viral spread and immune infiltrate. Interestingly a predominant non-cytolytic CD8+ T cell response was observed and these cells were not necessarily in close proximity to VZV antigen. We now aim to directly assess the impact of VZV infection of the ability of neurons to express cytokine, chemokines and other immune related molecules in an attempt to determine whether VZV infected neuronal or non-neuronal cells are important in producing factors involved in the recruitment of CD8+ T cells into human ganglia during herpes zoster. To address this aim he have for the first time developed a novel ex vivo model of infection of human ganglia with VZV, which has been shown to result in the productive infection of human neurons (Gowrishnakar et al 2007 Journal of Virology).

Additional information

Virus culture, mammalian cell culture, cell infection, transient transfection, flow cytometry, immunofluorescent staining, confocal microscopy, apoptosis assays, transmission electron microscopy, Western blotting, RNA extraction, microarray technologies and real time PCR.

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Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is 234