Bioscience

The bioscience department focuses on the molecular biology, epidemiology and immunology of infectious diseases with particular emphasis on the development of vaccines and understanding the transmission of pathogens. We work on malaria, viral pathogens, HIV and bacterial disease, and provide strategic direction to the Laboratory Research Platform

Our work on malaria covers the three life-cycle stages; gametocytes (where we are developing a human challenge model to test transmission blocking immunity and profiling the transmitting population in the community and developing markers of infectiousness); blood stage (where we are identifying the merozoite and red cell surface targets of human immunity and examining the role of parasite exposure on host immunity using a systems immunology approach); and pre-erythrocytic stages where we are examining vaccine-induced immunity.

Field surveillance for acute HIV infection and monitoring of a cohort and collaboration with IAVI has facilitated interests in functional assays (specifically the viral inhibition assay) and on the impact of transmitted drug resistance in Kenya.

We are undertaking work on the genomics of malaria, viral pathogens and bacterial pathogens in order to determine what the source of infection is (i.e. “who infects whom”) in collaboration with the Epidemiology and Demography Department.