How the body clears a medically important fungal pathogen
This immunopathology research project studies innate immunity in the killing of the fungal pathogen, Candida albicans by human phagocytes.
Clearance of fungal pathogens such as Candida albicans involves phagocytosis by fixed tissue macrophages as well as infiltrating monocytes and neutrophils.
Previously our research group has established the important role of complement, activated through the alternative pathway, in promoting resistance to fungal infection.
However it has also become evident that in the absence of complement macrophages and neutrophils have other means of phagocytosing and killing these fungi.
This project will explore the nature of the recognition system involved and the intracellular signalling pathways activated to bring about the phagocytosis and killing of Candida. In addition we will explore the potential for ‘Phagocyte Trained Immunity’ to accelerate the complement independent microbial killing.
If you have an interest in a specific area of immunopathology, please contact Professor Tony Ferrante to discuss potential honours projects.