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Herpes viruses

Herpes1 

Figure 1: CD8 T-cell infiltrate (red) in a brain lesion of a multiple sclerosis patient

The herpesvirus group aims to elucidate the virus-host factors involved in the immune control and pathogenesis of primate herpesviruses in their natural host: herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), varicella zoster virus (VZV) and its primate counterpart simian varicella virus (SVV) in monkeys.

A hallmark of these endemic herpesviruses is their ability to establish a lifelong latent infection of sensory neurons (HSV-1, VZV and SVV) and B-cells (EBV) after primary infection. Reactivation of latent virus, which potentially leads to recrudescent disease, is controlled by innate and adaptive immunity.  Virus-specific immune responses are commonly beneficial (control of latent HSV-1, VZV and SVV in sensory neurons), but can also cause detrimental disease affecting the eye (uveitis and keratitis; HSV-1 and VZV) or brain (multiple sclerosis; EBV). The lab has developed a unique infrastructure to acquire clinical specimens and state-of-the-art methodologies to characterize the virus status (proteome and transcriptome) and cell types, antigen-specificity and their effector functions in (non-)human tissues to identify the key factors that determine the clinical outcome of herpesvirus infections. The ultimate goal of our research is to develop novel intervention strategies aimed to prevent reactivation and herpesvirus-induced pathogenesis.

Ongoing research projects

The Herpesvirus group of the department of Virology has three ongoing research projects:

  • Immune control of HSV-1 and VZV latency
  • Pathogenesis of SVV
  • Role of EBV in multiple sclerosis

Get to know these research projects and researches by scrolling down.

Immune control of HSV-1 and VZV latency

Research team:

Prof. Dr. Georges M.G.M. Verjans, MSc PhD
Dr. Werner J.D. Ouwendijk, MSc PhD
Johanna G. Mitterreiter, MSc (PhD student)
Samira S. Michels, BSc
Sarah Getu, BSc

Selection of publications:

Pathogenesis of SVV

Research team:

Prof. Dr. Georges M.G.M. Verjans, MSc PhD
Dr. Werner J.D. Ouwendijk, MSc PhD
Samira S. Michels, BSc
Sarah Getu, BSc  


Selection of publications:

Role of EBV in multiple sclerosis

Research team:

Prof. Dr. Georges M.G.M. Verjans, MSc PhD
Gijs P. van Nierop, BSc
Samira S. Michels, BSc
Sarah Getu, BSc 
 

Publications:

  Herpes2

Figure 2: T-cell infiltrate in human trigeminal ganglion_CD8 (green)_CD4 (red)_DNA (blue)

  Herpes3

Figure 3: Varicella skin lesion of SVV infected Afriacn green monkey_SVV (red)