University of Dundee

Wellcome Centre for Anti-Infectives Research (CAIR)

Protein discovery could pave way for parasite research

A team of scientists at the School of Life Sciences have identified a protein that makes random decisions to allow parasites to survive in their human hosts. They have been able to identify a complex that allows genes to switch on and off randomly, changing cell surface characteristics and allowing escape from the defences of the host’s immune system. This behaviour is present in genes within parasites known as trypanosomes, and also in the parasite that causes malaria, which claims hundreds of thousands of lives every year.

Researcher recognised as emerging star of science

Dr Mattie Christine Pawlowic, a scientist based at the Wellcome Centre for Anti-Infectives Research (WCAIR) has been named as the inaugural winner of the British Society of Parasitology’s President’s Medal, a new award recognising the UK’s best young researchers in the field of parasitology. The medal will be awarded annually to an outstanding early career researcher who, as well as having already produced international-quality research, demonstrate the potential to become world leaders in parasitology.

Natural products from the Amazon may help to treat neglected diseases

Researchers in the Wellcome Centre for Anti-Infectives Research (WCAIR) have been awarded £700,000 to investigate whether bacteria and other natural products found in the Amazon hold the key to developing new drugs for neglected tropical diseases. The team led by Professor Kevin Read will work with colleagues in Brazil to identify novel drug targets and develop new therapies for visceral leishmaniasis and Chagas’ disease.

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