Biology/INBRE Seminar Eric Denkers, Ph.D.
Dr Eric Y. Denkers, professor of biology at the University of New Mexico is our speaker for Monday, October 21, 2019. His talk is: "Toxoplasma Gondii: Harnessing Immunity for a Successful Host-parasite Relationship"
Denkers' research focuses on immunity to the intracellular protozoan Toxoplasma gondii. This highly successful parasite is commonly found in humans, domestic animals, and wildlife populations. Toxoplasma stimulates a strong cell mediated immune response that normally enables host survival and establishment of long-term latent infection in the brain. It is estimated that 10-50% of the human population worldwide are infected with Toxoplasma without showing any symptoms of illness. However, the parasite can reactivate in the brain causing life-threatening disease in immunodeficient populations, and the parasite also poses a threat as a serious congenital infection. We use tools of biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics and immunology to determine how the immune system responds to infection, how the parasite evades immune-elimination, and how dysfunctional immunity can lead to host pathology and disease.
4 p.m. in MSEC 101