The interaction of paramyxoviruses with the interferon system


  • Prof Richard Randall

    University of St Andrews

  • Prof Steve Goodbourn

    University of London

Project summary

The interferon (IFN) system is a major component of vertebrate innate antiviral immunity. It is so powerful that most (if not all) viruses have evolved IFN antagonists. Whilst there has been an explosion in our knowledge of this subject in the last 10–15 years, there are still many unanswered questions about how viruses interact with the system. Professors Goodbourn and Randall aim to build up a comprehensive understanding of this interaction by focusing on paramyxoviruses, an important group of human and animal viruses that includes measles, mumps, parainfluenza and Newcastle disease viruses. Their studies will investigate: how paramyxovirus infections trigger IFN production; whether overstimulation of the system (and other innate responses) exacerbates disease processes; how IFN controls paramyxovirus infections and influences virus host range, pathogenicity and persistence; and the potential application of their findings to improve the control of virus diseases.