Thailand: Through a Thai TMRC we are characterizing the inflammatory phenotype of individuals infect with the Asian Liver Fluke (Opisthorchis viverrini, OV) and its role in the development of advance bile duct fibrosis and bile duct cancer. Here we continue to leverage our extensive cancer cohort in Khon Kaen.This works builds upon our investigation and understanding of the pathogenesis, carcinogenesis and ecology of the Opisthorchiasis in Thailand.
Microbiome: Leveraging our extensive human cohorts and animal models for OV infection and along with decreasing costs in Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) we have used ribosomal 16S sequencing of bacterial DNA derived in various sample matrices during OV infection. This work has fueled further research in evaluating the contribution to and modification of the microbiome derived in OV infection including identification of bacterial in the “sterile” bile duct. Read more in our recently published work.
Other work with S. mansoni:
Brazil: Through a Brazil TMRC, we are using immunomics to model the development of resistance to Schistosoma mansoni infection by repeated treatment with the anthelminthic Praziquantel.
In our ongoing investigations of Burkitt Lymphoma we are collecting tissues from individuals in Brazil diagnosed with Burkitt Lymphoma to support the “Burkitt Lymphoma Genome Sequencing Project” supported by the National Cancer Institute.
One of our goals is to generate a novel proteome array to Epstein Barr virus (EBV) and to combine it with the existing partial proteome microarray of Plasmodium falciparum (Pf). Our hopes are to identify a multiplexed antibody signature to these co-pathogens for use as a sensitive and specific biomarker for the risk or early diagnosis of endemic Burkitt Lymphoma.
We have submitted grant applications through the NIH and NCI, to biobank materials from individuals who have a malignancy and are also positive for the Human Immune Deficiency (HIV) virus. In coordination with the AIDS and Cancer Specimen Resource (ACSR) these materials would be banked according to Best Biorepository Practices for access by the scientific community.