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mexicorubberΒιοτεχνολογία

20 Φεβ 2013 (πριν από 4 χρόνια και 1 μήνα)

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Bio
:


I joined the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health,
Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology,
Malaria Research Institute in August 2003 after spending two
years as a Senior Lecturer at Imperial College London,
Biological Sciences Department and

Centre for Molecular
Microbiology & Infection. I pursued my first research project
on
the medicinal herb
Dictamnus creticus

while studying eco
-
technology at Mid Sweden University in the eighties. My
interest in pursuing a research career was stimulated wh
ile
pursuing my B.Sc. diploma thesis research in Prof. Uno Lindberg’s group at Stockholm University in the
spring of 1991. My graduate research initiated in the fall of 1991 at the Institute of Molecular Biology and
Biotechnology at the University of Crete

where I pursued my Ph.D. in
Prof.
Kitsos Louis group working on
Anopheles gambiae

molecular population biology and tissue specific gene expression.


I spent a significant period of my graduate studies in Dr. Fotis Kafatos lab at Harvard University,
Depart
ment of Molecular and Cellular Biology where I developed a RADP (Random Amplified
Polymorphic DNA)
-
based cytogenetic map for
A. gambiae

and identified several sex and tissue specific
mosquito

genes through differential display mRNA analyses. After a manda
tory “brake” in the Greek Army
as a microbiology assistant, I joined Dr. Kafatos’ group at the EMBL (European Molecular Biology
Laboratory) in Heidelberg as a postdoctoral Marie Curie Fellow in 1996. At EMBL, I focused my research
on mosquito immunity and
studied the
Plasmodium

infection responsive patterns of several novel immune
genes.
As a postdictoiral fellow I also collaborated extensively with Prof. Jules Hoffmann’s group in
Strasbourg on the discovery and characterization of mosquito antimicrobial pe
ptides and Prof. Robert
Sinden’s group in London on the characterization of novel Plasmodium mutants.
Together with
colleagues
at EMBL
I developed the first
A. gambiae

EST repertoire and spotted cDNA microarrays that
have been extensively used for transcri
ptomic analysis of mosquito infection responses.

I was recruited
as a Senior Lecturer by Imperial College London in 2001 and that’s where I started my independent
research. I decided to join the
Johns Hopkins
University, Bloomberg
School of Public Health, Department
of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology in August 2003 because of the establishment of the Malaria
Research Institute that provided
unique

opportunities for malaria research, and also because of the
unbearably high cost

of living in London.









Current research:


My group’s ongoing and future research program broadly focuses on the innate immune systems
and
midgut microbiomes
of mosquito disease vectors, and comprises several independent

but synergistically
interacting projects. We are interested in understanding the role and mechanisms of the mosquito’s
innate immune system in the defense against human pathogens such as
Plasmodium

and the Dengue
virus. A major focus is concentrated on
th
e
mosquito

IMD pathway

regulated
anti
-
Plasmodium

defense
system

that

is activate in killing malaria parasite in the major malaria vectors
A
, gambiae
,
A. stephensi

and
A. albimanus
.
We have generated the first genetically modified super
-
immune mosquitoes that turn
on this defense
system

earlier and stronger, thereby resulting in resistance to parasite infection.
Another
major interest of my research group is the study of mosquito midg
ut microflora and how it can directly and
indirectly
influence

the ability of the mosquito to transmit human pathogens.
Towards this, we have
shown
that the microflora stimulates a basal immune activity that, in turn, is acting against parasite and viral
p
athogens in the mosquito gut. We have also identified bacteria of the natural midgut flora that exert
direct anti
-
pathogen activities, through either the production of reactive oxygen species or secondary
metabolites. Our research activities spans
from the

field to the bench, across several mosquito vector
species and pathogens, but is at the same time highly focused on specific biological processes of vector
-
pathogen interactions.
Over the past 8 years at the Johns Hopkins University we have
contributed wi
th
several pioneering discoveries

and have maintained a leading position in the development of mosquito
vector functional genomics tools, as we designed and
produced

the first whole
-
genome glass slide
oligonucleotide microarrays for
A. gambiae
,
Aedes
aegypti
,
Culex pipiens

and
Anopheles stephensi
.

Our
mission is to characterize
and understand
the
molecular
mechanisms
that are implicated in restricting
infections of mosquito vectors with human pathogens, and assess the suitability of these discoveries f
or
the development of novel disease control strategies.
Our competitive advantage derives from a unique
blend of core competencies in molecular entomology, innate immunity and functional genomics, as well
as the access to state
-
of
-
the
-
art research infrastr
ucture. The long
-
term goal of
our

research program is to
broaden the basic knowledge of this field and provide new
weapons

for the
war against vector
-
borne
diseases
.

Recent and current collaborators

include

Dr. Roberto Barrera (CDC, Puerto Rico), Dr.
Bruce

Christensen
(University of Wisconsin),
Dr.
George Christophides (Imperial College London),
Dr.
Mariano Garcia
-
Blanco

(Duke University
),
Dr. Marc Muskavitch (Boston College),
Dr. Clara Ocampo (
CIDEIM, Cali,
Colombia)
, Dr. Pedro Oliviera (
Universidade

Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brasil)
,
Dr.
Alex
ander

Raikhel

(University of California, Riverside)
,
Dr.
Claudia Romero

(
Universidad del Norte,
Barranquilla,
Colombia)
,
Dr. Mike Strand (University of Georgia),
Dr.
Marcos Sorgine

(
Universidade Federal do Rio d
e
Janeiro, Brasil)
,
Dr.
Giuliano

Gasperi and

Dr.
Ludvik Gumulski

(University of Pavia
, Italy
)
,
Dr.
Juan
Pascale

(Gorgas Institute
, Panama
).

Dr. Andy Waters (University of Glasgow
, UK
)

The group and its members have received funding from: National Institutes of Health, National Science
Foundation, Ellison Medical Foundation, American Society of Microbiology,
Lang Family, Bang Family,
Bloomberg Family Foundation.

I am also d
irecting the J
HMRI Parasitology Core Facility

(
www.parasitecore.org
) which
supports a variety of projects that focus on the parasite’s interactions with the mosquito vector
and human host, and other biological processes that are relevant for its capacity to transmit and

infect. The Parasitology Core Facility provides
Plasmodium falciparum

asexual blood
-

and
gametocyte
-
stage cultures, and both human and rodent
Plasmodium
sporozoite stages.
Specialized services are also provided upon request.

In 2008 I completed my MBA wit
h concentration in Management & Leadership to better lead the group in
today’s highly competitive environment. As a consequence I also give a graduate course on the
“Business of Academic Biomedical Research”.



JHSPH Faculty Page


JHMRI PI Page


Current CV (
October

20
11
)





mba


COURSE


COMPANY





The Paperless Professor:


My productivity has to a significant extent benefitted from optimizing and streamlining my office w
ork by
going paperless. I am in fact close to 100% paperless and do all my work tasks electronically. Johns
Hopkins School of Public Health has highlighted my office as the "greenest" at:






http://www.jhsph.edu/green/paperless_prof.html