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Harnesssing dendritic cells to design better vaccines

Our group focuses of studying dendritic cells (DC) by analysing the cell surface receptors they express with the view that these receptors contribute to specialised functions. Ultimately the knowledge that we acquire is directed at generating better and safer vaccines. We have identified Clec9A as a molecule critical to the function of a certain DC subset and then exploited this molecule as a means to deliver cargo to DC and thereby creating better vaccines particularly for diseases for which effective vaccines do not exist i.e. malaria and cancer. We have also discovered a receptor that plays a key role in the recognition of certain types of DNA. Since modified oligonucleotides (DNA) are used as adjuvants in vaccines, it is important to understand how this receptor (DEC-205) interacts with DNA and what the consequences of this interaction are. Importantly, by maximising the efficiency with which DEC-205 captures DNA, we can design DNA with superior adjuvant properties.
Essential criteria: 
Minimum entry requirements can be found here:
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, cancer, tumours, dendritic cells, vaccines, immunisation
Biomedicine Discovery Institute (School of Biomedical Sciences) » Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Available options 
Masters by research
Time commitment 
Top-up scholarship funding available 
Physical location 
15 Innovation Walk

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