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Finding biomarkers of anti-microbial drug resistance via a systems biology analysis of fungal pathogen interactions with the human immune system

Objective

We propose a systems biology study of the specificity of response of the cell-mediated immune system to fungal microorganisms in order to investigate the genetic basis of susceptibility to fungal disease and elucidate molecular mechanisms of drug resistance in fungal pathogens. An integrative approach, combining high-throughput and traditional wet-lab work with computational and bioinformatics methods, will be applied to identify biomarkers of resistance to currently available treatments and to develop novel putative drug target genes and pathways in different fungi. We will use Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a normally non-pathogenic yeast model organism, Candida albicans and Aspergillus fumigatus, two major recognized fungal pathogens as well as other Aspergillus spp. known to be multi-drug resistant and difficult to treat. This project meets the criteria of the call, the strategic objective of which is “to confront the increasing emergence and spread of antimicrobial drug resistant pathogens in Europe” by addressing a well-defined class of infectious disease caused by fungal pathogens, with significant morbidity and mortality in a large segment of the population, and a high economic cost due to resistance. The anticipated results are highly relevant to society in terms of reducing the burden of mortality and suffering in immunosuppressed patients and in terms of reducing medical costs associated with treating opportunistic fungal infections. The potential economic upside for novel broad-spectrum anti-infectives is very large. The worldwide market for antifungals is currently estimated at $4 billion US annually. We tackle the issues of anti-microbial drug resistance head on via a multidisciplinary systems biology study combining bacterial genetics, clinical and pharmacological research in a systems biology approach, integrating traditional wet-lab methods with those of functional genomics, proteomics, metabolomics and bioinformatics.

Field of science

  • /medical and health sciences/basic medicine/pharmacology and pharmacy/drug resistance
  • /social sciences/sociology/demography/mortality
  • /medical and health sciences/basic medicine/immunology

Call for proposal

FP7-HEALTH-2009-single-stage
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

CP-FP - Small or medium-scale focused research project

Coordinator

EUROPEAN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY LABORATORY
Address
Meyerhofstrasse 1
69117 Heidelberg
Germany
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 867 883
Administrative Contact
Tom Ratcliffe (Mr.)

Participants (8)

UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI FIRENZE
Italy
EU contribution
€ 336 800
Address
Piazza San Marco 4
50121 Florence
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Alessandro Mugelli (Mr.)
THE UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 591 716,40
Address
Oxford Road
M13 9PL Manchester
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Liz Fay (Ms.)
UNIVERSIDADE DE AVEIRO
Portugal
EU contribution
€ 291 457
Address
Campus Universitário De Santiago
3810-193 Aveiro
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Manuel António Da Silva Santos (Dr.)
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE CNRS
France
EU contribution
€ 299 842
Address
Rue Michel Ange 3
75794 Paris
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Béatrice Saint-Cricq (Ms.)
ALERGENETICA SL
Spain
EU contribution
€ 486 000
Address
"Calderon De La Barca 5, 5, #27"
38005 Santa Cruz De Tenerife
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Brian Miller (Dr.)
UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PERUGIA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 200 000
Address
Piazza Dell Universita 1
06123 Perugia
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Rosario Francesco Donato (Prof.)
COMMISSARIAT A L ENERGIE ATOMIQUE ET AUX ENERGIES ALTERNATIVES

Participation ended

France
Address
Rue Leblanc 25
75015 Paris 15
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Elizabeth May (Ms.)
FUNDACIO PARC CIENTIFIC DE BARCELONA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 1 217 463
Address
Baldiri I Reixac 4
08028 Barcelona
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Moises Tarte (Mr.)