I am interested in the diversity of virus genomes as they appear in human infections, with a special interest on mixed virus strain infections and their dynamics in the human host. The knowledge is fundamental for understanding virus-host interaction and pathogenesis. My research focus is on human cytomegalovirus, which is a major cause of serious illness in congenitally infected newborns and patients with a weakened immune system.
My current work relates to following areas:
- characterizing strains in clinical samples using highly sensitive tools
- uncovering the occurrence and dynamic of mixed strain populations in the infected host
- revealing any association of certain strains or mixtures thereof with clinical outcome
- understanding the biological properties of different strains by focusing on polymorphic genes involved in cell tropism
Techniques, methods & infrastructure
Sanger and next-generation sequencing strategies and a broad spectrum of PCR and qPCR assays to comprehensively detect and characterize human viruses in clinical samples including virus genotyping and resistence testing.
Cell culture models for studying infection and growth properties of human cytomegaloviruses.
BAC mutagenesis for generation of mutant viruses.
Broad spectrum of molecular and cell biology methods.