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Institut für Parasitologie

Joao Luiz  Da Silva Filho

Joao Luiz Da Silva Filho

  • Research Associate

Biography: I obtained my PhD degree in Immunology from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2015. During my PhD, I obtained a fellowship to develop my research project at Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, MD, USA), under the supervision of Dr Fidel Zavala. There, I studied the immunoregulatory actions of the renin-angiotensin system, currently in focus because of ACE2, the coronavirus entry receptor. My research focused on investigating how Angiotensin peptides regulate Plasmodium-specific CD8+ T cells response during liver and blood-stage malaria, with the aim to understand the cellular mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of severe malaria and identify potential targets for adjuvant therapies. Following my PhD, I joined the group of Dr Fabio Costa at University of Campinas, where I started a research project investigating the pathogenesis of malaria vivax in human patients. In 2019, I took up a postdoctoral fellowship funded by FAPESP and moved on to Glasgow where I have since been working with Professor Matthias Marti.

Research Interests:  At present, I am investigating a new paradigm: parasite enrichment in the hematopoietic niche, with focus on Plasmodium vivax, the most globally widespread malaria parasite. My work studies naturally infected patients from a series of tailored and complementary clinical cohorts, where, in collaboration with a team of leading malaria researchers, I apply innovative and cutting-edge technologies to perform the first systematic study investigating P. vivax infection in the hematopoietic niche. We characterise parasite and host biology in infected tissues and investigate their behavior ex vivo. My long-term goal is to carry out collaborative research to develop tools and techniques towards a better understanding of Plasmodium biology and pathogenesis and provide tools for the development of new malaria diagnostic and control measures in support of the ongoing malaria elimination agenda.