The paradigm of antimicrobials design almost always neglects how intracellular pathogens interact with their host, the so-called host-pathogens interactions. The very first level of these interactions occurs when the innate...Read more
Our Infection Dynamics Unit proposes a research vision that aims to revolutionize the way we treat infections caused by intracellular pathogens, with the aim of finding a universal therapy for infectious diseases that also counteracts the development of drug resistance.
Our particular interest is the eradication of human tuberculosis, but the ultimate goal is to create a universal delivery system that recognizes any infected cell. To do this, we will first examine the molecular "bar codes" of infected cells, i.e. those specific membrane proteins that cells express at the time of infection. This information is essential to then engineer a repertoire of super-selective polymeric nanoparticles, known as Polymersomes, functionalized with selective ligands capable of recognizing, binding and attacking only infected cells, leaving uninfected cells completely intact.