Molecular Virology

Introduction

The Group of Mucosal Infection and Immunity is part of the Department of Medicine at Imperial College. Led by Professor Robin Shattock, the main focus of research is the investigation of the mechanisms of mucosal HIV transmission and development of novel preventative strategies appropriate to a developing world setting.

The group's research has been instrumental in elucidating the early mechanism of HIV transmission. This has led to the establishment of international collaborations aimed at preclinical identification, development and selection of microbicide and vaccine candidates before formal clinical efficacy trials.

The group also investigates respiratory infections, particularly in early life. Dr John Tregoning is focusing on the causes of severe respiratory viral infection and exploring mechanisms to prevent them.

Group lead and funding

Funding


Our work within Mucosal Infection and Immunity is made possible through the generous contributions of our funding partners and donors:

Group leader


Professor Robin Shattock is Professor of Mucosal Infection and Immunity, leading a team of 28 researchers within the Department of Medicine. The main focus of his research is the investigation of the mechanisms of mucosal infection and development of novel preventative strategies appropriate to a developing world setting. This has led to the establishment of international collaborations aimed at preclinical identification, development and selection of microbicide and vaccine candidates prior to formal clinical efficacy trials.

Research group members


Current projects

The DNAVAC project is funded by the Gates Foundation as part of the Collaboration for AIDS Vaccine Discovery (CAVD). Professor Shattock’s group is responsible for the DNAVAC project which aims to apply recent state of the art technological advances in DNA vaccination and immune monitoring, both at the single cell and molecular level, to enable detailed probing of developing vaccine-induced antibody responses.

ADITEC (Advanced Immunisation Technologies) is funded under the 7th Framework by the EU. ADITEC is a collaborative research programme with 42 partners from 13 EU countries that aim to accelerate the development of novel and powerful immunisation technologies for the next generation of human vaccines. Professor Shattock leads the Prime-boost work package for the consortium.

BioVacSafe (Biomarkers for enhanced vaccines immunosafety) is a five-year project funded by EU Innovative Medicine initiative (IMI). BioVacSafe aims to develop cutting-edge tools to speed up and improve the testing and monitoring of vaccine safety, both before and after release to the market. It is a public-private consortium of 19 partners involving three of Europe's leading vaccine producing companies, experts from major academic institutions, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and non-governmental organisations. Professor Shattock leads the work package on preclinical models.

The EAVI2020 consortium, funded under H2020 by the EU, is led by Professor Shattock at Imperial College London, and brings together leading HIV researchers from 23 public organisations and biotech companies from across Europe, Australia, Canada and the USA, pooling their knowledge and expertise to develop novel candidate vaccines that can be taken through to human trials within five years. In addition to coordinating the programme, Prof Shattock’s group is responsible for performing a range of Experimental Medicine clinical trials of promising new HIV candidates.