Antibodies, Neutralizing; Antigens; Coronavirus; Flavivirus
Our research focuses on specific aspects of the molecular biology and immunology of surface glycoproteins of enveloped viruses (e.g. SARS-CoV-2) that are responsible for host cell entry and thus mediate cell attachment and membrane fusion. Neutralizing antibodies are key actors in blocking these entry steps, and we dissect the antibody response with respect to specific structural domains and immunodominant regions after sequential infections/vaccinations. Since the genetic variability of virus strains also influences the antibody response, we also assess the impact of various virus strains on antibody profiles. Overall, our studies yield insights into the specificity and functionality of polyclonal antibody responses and provide thus important clues for vaccine design and vaccination strategies.
Techniques, methods & infrastructure
- Molecular and biochemical techniques (e.g. molecular cloning, different transfection methods, protein purification, gel electrophoresis, Western blot, SPR assays)
- Virological and immunological methods (e.g. RT-PCR, focus assays, ELISA, neutralization assays, reporter virus systems)
- Medits, I. et al. (2022) ‘Different Neutralization Profiles After Primary SARS-CoV-2 Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 Infections’, Frontiers in Immunology, 13. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2022.946318.
- Stiasny, K. et al. (2022) ‘Impact of structural dynamics on biological functions of flaviviruses’, The FEBS Journal [Preprint]. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/febs.16419.
- Medits, I., Heinz, F.X. and Stiasny, K. (2021) ‘An Absolutely Conserved Tryptophan in the Stem of the Envelope Protein E of Flaviviruses Is Essential for the Formation of Stable Particles’, Viruses, 13(9), p. 1727. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/v13091727.
- Koblischke, M. et al. (2020) ‘Dynamics of CD4 T Cell and Antibody Responses in COVID-19 Patients With Different Disease Severity’, Frontiers in Medicine, 7. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2020.592629.
- Medits, I. et al. (2020) ‘Extensive flavivirus E trimer breathing accompanies stem zippering of the post‐fusion hairpin’, EMBO reports, 21(8). Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.15252/embr.202050069.