Learn More About Our Research
We are sharing a love of knowledge about viruses and RNA
We are a growing group of similar-minded scholars interested in viruses, RNA. We strive to understand how virures exploit a plethora of complex molecular interactions to efficiently replicate and package their genomes. Together we grow up in an environment that emphasises learning and academic excellence, and enjoy our time in Cambridge.
Did you know that rotaviruses are the culprit behind more than 170,000 child deaths each year? We’re here to study these viruses and figure out how to stop them. Although vaccines have been introduced in over 100 countries and protect a majority of kids in some countries, they only reduce the disease by 30-60% in developing countries. To make matters worse, there aren't any rotavirus-specific drugs available. And if that wasn't enough, new rotavirus serotypes are constantly emerging and spreading. Rotaviruses contain 11 distinct double-stranded (ds)RNA chromosomes, which we call ‘gene segments’ that must be replicated to make new viruses. These segments contribute to the emergence of new viruses through a process called reassortment, where RNA segments are exchanged between different strains. However, we don't have a detailed model of how these 11 single-stranded (ss)RNA segment precursors are packaged. With more insight into the rotavirus genome packaging process, we can better understand the reassortment and evolution of rotaviruses.