Macrophage & Dendritic cell biology
We are working to understand how phagocytosis is regulated; how phagosomal pH, membrane integrity, and maturation is normally controlled and subverted by bacteria; and how autophagy may impact on intracellular bacteria survival.
We use novel fluorescent sensors and advanced microscopy (in collaboration with Dr Steve Lee, Chemistry Cambridge), model organisms such as dictyostelium (c/w Dr Rob Kay, MRC-LMB), and functional assays to understand the cellular regulation and molecular effectors of phagosomal function.
Innate Immunity. A Spaetzle-like role for nerve growth factor β in vertebrate immunity to Staphylococcus aureus.
Hepburn L, et al.,Science. 2014 Oct 31;346(6209):641-6.
Functional drug screening reveals anticonvulsants as enhancers of mTOR-independent autophagic killing of Mycobacterium tuberculosis through inositol depletion.
Schiebler M, et al., EMBO Mol Med. 2014 Dec 22;7(2):127-39.
Azithromycin blocks autophagy and may predispose cystic fibrosis patients to mycobacterial infection.
Renna M et al., J Clin Invest. 2011 Sep;121(9):3554-63.