Scientific Focus

Research Group "Lung Infection & Repair"

Scientific Focus

Investigation of basic aspects of gammaherpesvirus pathogenesis and immunity using murine gammaherpesvirus 68 (MHV-68) as a model

The human gammaherpesviruses Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) and Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) are associated with a number of tumors and lymphoproliferative disorders. In addition, gammaherpesviruses are believed to be causally involved in a number of chronic diseases including chronic lung diseases. Due to the species-specificity of the gammaherpesviruses, pathogenetic studies of the human infections are restricted. MHV-68, a rodent gammaherpesvirus, allows to study the pathogenesis of a gammaherpesvirus infection in the mouse, a model that is amenable to genetic manipulation. In our research projects, we use MHV-68 infection of mice to study gammaherpesvirus pathogenesis, in particular the role of gammaherpesvirus infection in the pathophysiology of chronic lung diseases.