[14-09-2008 to 15-10-2008]
£1.27M MRC Grant Award
Professor Richard Elliot of the School of Biology has received a £1.27M MRC grant for a five year programme entitled, "Hantavirus reverse genetics and innate immune responses".
Hantaviruses are a group of viruses that cause lifelong infections mice, rats and other rodents without causing disease. However, if humans become infected by inhaling infected-rodent urine contaminated dust, they can become very ill with severe diseases called haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome and hantavirus pulmonary syndrome. Death rates can be as high as 35%.
We want to understand details of how hantaviruses grow at the molecular level and how they deal with the cell’s defence mechanisms. To aid these studies we will develop methodology to apply recombinant DNA techniques to make viruses containing defined genetic changes in their genomes that are debilitated in their growth properties and could be used as potential vaccines. In addition, our studies will provide important new information that may help in the design of new antiviral drugs.
contact: Prof Richard Elliott