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Basic Research and Anthrax Vaccine Exploration

Queen’s University Belfast

Queen’s University Belfast is a member of the Russell Group of 24 leading UK research-intensive universities, providing world-class education underpinned by world-class research. Founded as Queen’s College in 1845, it became a university in its own right in 1908. Today, it is an international centre of research and education rooted at the heart of Northern Ireland.

The University has won the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education on five occasions – for Northern Ireland’s Comprehensive Cancer Services programme and for world-class achievement in green chemistry, environmental research, palaeoecology and law. Four prestigious Times Higher Education (THE) Awards further recognises the University’s contribution to society. Queen’s received the award for Excellence and Innovation in the Arts in 2008, was awarded the title of the UK’s Entrepreneurial University of the Year in 2009, won the Outstanding Engineering Research Team of the Year category in 2010 and received the Most Innovative Teacher of the Year Award in 2011.

With more than 17,000 students and 3,500 staff, it is a dynamic and diverse institution, a magnet for inward investment, a patron of the arts and a global player in areas ranging from cancer studies to sustainability, and from pharmaceuticals to creative writing.

Centre for infection and Immunity
The Centre for Infection and Immunity (Cii) is an exciting new initiative delivering high-quality research programmes to develop new treatments for infectious and inflammatory diseases. We are based in a newly built state of the art facility equipped with cutting edge technology and capacity for 200 researchers.

Cii is leading international programmes investigating the role innate and adaptive immune responses to infection and tissue injury and how these might be targeted to develop effective new treatments. Our research is primarily focused on lung diseases with major programmes in Asthma, Cystic Fibrosis, Lung infection and Acute Lung Injury. The Centre supports a highly interactive and collaborative, multidisciplinary  environment between Molecular Immunologists, Microbiologists and Clinical researchers.

The Centre has a strong translational research emphasis, developing novel therapeutic strategies, using in vivo models of disease and conducting clinical trials including early phase programmes. This is supported by Northern Ireland CRN and international collaborations in Asthma, CF and early drug development.  It also has strong links with industry partners in biotech and pharma.

Ingram research group
The overarching aim of my research is to understanding the lymphocytic response to bacterial infections, predominantly pulmonary infections, in order to facilitate rational vaccine design. I have a particular interest in the how the innate and adaptive arms of the immune system interact during acute infection. Ongoing research projects within the lab include; the identification of bacterial (Pseudomonas and Anthrax) antigens that elicit a memory T cell response and may therefore represent novel vaccine candidates, defining the role of T cells in response to acute bacterial infection (Streptococcus and Pseudomonas), establishing a biological relevant chronic Pseudomonas infection model and establish the impact of the lung microbiome on host responses to Pseudomonas.