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Research Topic: Disease intervention strategies

Detailed understanding of host-pathogen interactions is necessary to develop new interventions against problematic infections. Within this NCOH Research topic, a multidisciplinary team of microbiologists, immunologists, chemists and clinical microbiologists join forces to create a better understanding of host-pathogen interactions with the ultimate aim to develop innovative therapies against emerging pathogens.

Better insights in host-pathogen interactions will be obtained by: 1) determining how colonisation by bacteria shapes the adaptive immune response; 2) studying metagenomic and metabolomics analysis of the host microbiome to identify bacteria that synthesize antibiotics; (3) chemical derivatization of small molecules to produce new compounds with altered or enhanced bioactivity; (4) activity-based protein profiling to identify lead inhibitors; and (5) metabolomics approaches dedicated to identify the host-pathogen interaction.

Furthermore, to develop new therapies we will explore: 1) methods to improve the activity of our immune system via therapeutic antibodies or vaccines against antibiotic resistant bacteria and emerging zoonotic viruses; 2) explore the efficacy of bacteriophage therapy in vitro- and in vivo (animal models or cystic fibrosis patients).


Project #1 – NCOH-LSH Project 

CANVAS - Broadly protective glycoconjugate vaccines targeting major animal and zoonotic Gram-positive pathogens

PhD student: to be appointed

Organisation: Utrecht University

Project #2 – NCOH-LSH Project

ACZI - Innovative antibody-based strategies to combat future emergence of zoonotic viral infections

PhD student: to be appointed

Organisations: Utrecht University (coordinator), Erasmus MC

Project #3

Improving the functional activity of monoclonal antibodies against Gram-negative bacteria

PhD student: to be appointed

Organisation: UMC Utrecht

Associated: Utrecht University

Project #4

BRICK study- Bacteriophage Research on Immune response, Clinical use and Knowledge on virome changes

PhD student: to be appointed

Organisation: Erasmus MC (coordinator), UMC Utrecht

Project #5

Development of pan-immunoselective proteasome inhibitors

PhD student: Patrick Dekker

Organisation: Leiden University

Project #6

Antibiotic persister and biofilm-associated infections: Investigating the role of the host microenvironment to optimize antibiotic therapy

PhD student: Maik Kok

Organisation: Leiden University

Project #7

Systems microscopy-based drug target discovery in pathogen-mediated inflammatory response signalling

PhD student: Linda van den Berk

Organisation: Leiden University

Project #8

Morphological plasticity of bacteria to stressful conditions

PhD student: Eveline Ultee

Organisation: Leiden University

Project #9

Using chemical probes to study the host-pathogen proteome

PhD student: Alexander Bakker

Organisation: Leiden University

Project #10

Design of Next-Generation Antibiotics with cutting-edge NMR studies

PhD student: -

Organisation: Utrecht University

Project #11

In-host adaptation in chronic fungal airway infections and development of new antifungals

PhD student: -

Organisation: Utrecht University

Project #12

Nanobody-based targeted therapy to combat zoonotic viral infections

PhD student: -

Organisation: Utrecht University

Project #13 – OH EJP Project

In vitro and in vivo analyses and modulation of the chicken gut microbiome to combat AMR

PhD student: Ingrid Cardenas Rey

Organisations: Wageningen University & Research (coordinator), Animal & Plant Health Agency, United Kingdom