Projects

Recruitment to the NRPDTP and iCASE programmes are now open. The deadline for applications is the 27th November 2017.

02 / 10 / 2017

Novel vaccines for major animal virus infections in developing countries (CARDING_U18DTP)

how to apply

Vaccination is an efficient and cost-effective form of preventing infectious disease that can lead to their global eradication (smallpox and rinderpest). Veterinary vaccines are routinely used to control infections and to enhance animal welfare. However, there is an urgent and growing need for the development of new and improved vaccines to further reduce the global burden of infectious disease morbidity and mortality, particularly against known and emerging and re-emerging diseases. This PhD studentship aims to exploit a bacterial microvesicle drug delivery technology platform developed at the Quadram Institute to generate new vaccine formulations suitable for use in livestock animals. This will involve, (1) engineering the commensal human gut bacterium Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron (Bt) to secrete in their outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) validated vaccine antigens of influenza virus and peste des petits ruminants (PPR) virus both of which have significant economic impact, particularly in developing countries in Asia and Africa where the diseases they cause are endemic, (2) evaluating the ability of OMV vaccine formulations to target antigen presenting cells within gastrointestinal and respiratory tract associated lymphoid tissues and, (3) determining the ability of OMV vaccines to generate virus neutralising local and systemic immune responses. The student will receive training in cellular and molecular biology, anaerobic microbiology, OMV production and, with our collaborators at Liverpool Univ. and Lanzhou Veterinary Research Institute (China), in vivo models of infection and immunity. This exciting project provides an opportunity to join a vibrant community of scientists and PhD students at the Quadram Institute and undertake cutting edge research in vaccinology.