BEng Ecole Superieure d'Ingenieurs de Luminy
Flaviviruses are RNA viruses that need to subvert cellular machinery
to propagate; they also need to evade the innate defense mechanisms
that those cells have developed to detect and fight infections.
Flaviviruses produce during infection an abundant, highly structured
non-coding RNA termed subgenomic flaviviral RNA or sfRNA. The role of
the sfRNA is poorly understood but has been linked with evasion of the
interferon type I response. We hypothesized that a mechanism by which
the sfRNA acts could be through its ability to sequestrate and
inactivate the action of host RNA-binding proteins involved in the
innate immune system.
My PhD project focuses on deciphering the role of a subset of stress
granule proteins in the antiviral response to dengue virus and
evaluating the role of the sfRNA as their antagonist. We hope that our
results will help understand better dengue virus pathogenicity, as
well as providing new insights in the regulation of the antiviral
innate immune response.