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The European Union´s "Infection models beyond cell culture" training


The objective of this research programme is to analyze the complex interplay between the host and the microbe, which eventually leads to an infection, in the full biological context.

The spectrum of infectious diseases in industrialized countries changed significantly during the last decades, however several global health challenges remain. Infections often result from the dis-equilibrium in a previous delicate balance between host and microbe, which can lead to a shift from acute to persistent infections and from commensalisms to virulence.

Human enforced microbial behaviour like antibiotic resistance and biofilm formation also lead to novel disease spectra. In vivo infection models combined with global expression analysis will be used in the analysis of infections caused by Escherichia coli, Helicobacter pylori, Neisseria meningitidis, Salmonella yyphimurium, Streptococcus pneumonia, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and the parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Thereby the host as well as the microbes will be mutated to investigate the influence of the genetic background on the progress of infections.

Infections will be followed in real time by in vivo imaging. Laser dissection microscopy will be used to isolate single host cells or bacteria to determine their expression pattern. Only in that way will we understand the details of infection processes, which will allow the development of novel antimicrobial agents.

Call for proposal

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