Macrophages are the first line immune cells that destroy invading microbes and thus protect us from infectious diseases. However, several microbes can hide within macrophages to cause disease. Our recent research has shown that drugs that kill infected macrophages prevent infectious diseases.
Several superbugs employ weapons to kill macrophages to promote their own survival. In these cases, our research is focused in preventing macrophage death by targeting host factors with existing drugs to restore protective immunity.
We currently work on microbes that cause life-threatening pneumonia, systemic fungal infections and sexually transmitted diseases. We believe that understanding the macrophage-microbe interaction is key for the development of new treatment options.