Faculty Profile: Lodoen, Melissa

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Faculty Information Lab Information (Packet Type, Course Title, & Department) Location
Lodoen, Melissa
Lab Contact:
Melissa Lodoen
mlodoen@uci.edu
(949) 824-7805
A PARASITE IMMUNITY
Department: Molecular Biology & Biochemistry
3336 McGaugh Hall

Research Description

My research examines the interaction between the immune system and the parasite pathogen Toxoplasma gondii. T. gondii infects approximately one third of the human population worldwide and causes a lifelong chronic infection. The projects in my lab focus on defining the molecular mechanisms by which T. gondii modulates host immune responses during acute infection. Specifically, we are investigating the pathways by which T. gondii alters the expression of receptors and ligands on the surface of infected immune cells, including monocytes, macrophages, and dendritic cells. We are also working to determine how altered receptor expression affects the ability of infected cells to communicate with other cells in the environment. The goal of these studies is to gain insight into how T. gondii modulates mechanisms of host defense

Requirements to Participate

Highly motivated second or third year Biological Sciences students. Attendance and participation in weekly lab meetings is expected.

Time Commitment per Week

12

Faculty Means of Evaluation

Demonstration of initiative, effort, research progress, and quality of written and oral (one presentation in lab meeting each quarter) presentation.