Looking at Immune receptors during viral infections at a single-cell level
Dr. Anunya Opasawatchai
Institution or company
Mahidol University, Bangkok
Infection, Genomics and Rare Diseases
White blood cells called T and B cells have a special role in helping our bodies fight infection. Structures, called receptors, are situated on the surface of each cell. When your body has an infection, these receptors stick or cling on to parts of the bacteria or viruses that have invaded your body. These immune receptors can be different between each person because it depends on what infections your body has had to fight during your lifetime. However, despite people having fought different infections, research has shown that many immune receptors will be similar, and these are known as public T or B cell receptors.
This study wants to use a special, new genetic technique to learn more about how these public T and B cell receptors behave in people who have been infected with various viruses, including SARS-CoV2, dengue fever, influenza virus and HIV. We will collect this information (data) from public resources, including SARS-CoV2 sample data from the NIHR BioResource. We will use computational methods to identify common receptors and then aim to test this research in our lab to understand how these receptors bind in these infections. We hope our research will help towards developing new treatments to prevent and help fight against new viral infections.