CIIE Visitor: Professor Kristian Andersen

As part of our Visiting Scientists Scheme CIIE will be hosting a visit from Professor Kristian Andersen from The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, California.

On 11th June 2015 at 2 p.m. in Lecture Theatre 3, Ashworth Labs our visitor will give a seminar entitled "Genomic insights into the 2014-2015 Ebola epidemic".

In its largest outbreak, Ebola virus disease is spreading through Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, and Senegal with thousands of people infected. Our group sequenced 99 Ebola virus genomes from 78 patients in Sierra Leone to high depth of coverage. We found that the virus rapidly accumulates mutations inter- and intra-host, and we characterized patterns of viral transmission over the initial weeks of the epidemic. The West African variant likely diverged from central African lineages around 2004, crossed from Guinea to Sierra Leone in May 2014, and has exhibited sustained human-to-human transmission subsequently, with no evidence of additional zoonotic sources. Because many of the mutations alter protein sequences and other biologically meaningful targets, continued sequence-based monitoring as the outbreak progresses is critical to understand the impact of viral evolution on diagnostics, vaccines, and therapies.

Andersen Lab

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