Faculty mentor: Nels Elde
I uncover novel host-pathogen conflicts in mammalian virus-detecting innate immune proteins. I specifically, am investigating signals of rapid evolution I have identified in the gene, MDA5, which is responsible for inducing interferon (IFN) expression of the host’s innate immune response when activated by unknown dsRNA. I am currently designing experiments to assess the functional significance of the amino acid changes we observed across species’ MDA5.
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