Dr. Gisa Gerold, Researcher of the TWINCORE – Centre for Experimental and Clinical Infection Research and visiting professor at Umea University in Sweden, is associated with RESIST: Her PhD student Lisa Laßwitz will be funded by RESIST for six months. Dr. Gerold’s team investigates, within the framework of RESIST, the genetic basis for susceptibility to Chikungunya virus infections. The virus is transmitted from mosquitoes to humans and can cause arthritis-like chronic joint pain. The virus is widespread in many African and Asian countries and in Central and South America, but also occurs sporadically in Europe.
”In the future, the virus will play an increasingly important role here, as the virus transmitting mosquitoes will continue to spread due to global warming and the viruses within them will also multiply more rapidly,“ said Dr. Gerold. Her team was recently able to discover an important human gene that promotes the reproduction of the Chikungunya virus. On this basis, the team wants find out to whether people with naturally occurring variants of the identified gene or older people have an altered risk of infection with the virus.
”Being associated with RESIST allows us intellectual exchange, exciting collaborations and access to important human samples, obtained within the new RESIST study with elderly healthy individuals,“ she said. Dr. Gerold works besides TWINCORE at Umea University at the ”Wallenberg Centre for Molecular Medicine” in the ”Department of Clinical Microbiology“.
More information is available online: www.twincore.de/gerold or via twitter: https://twitter.com/GeroldLab