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Fighting infection
March 5 - 9
Coordinator: Nuno Empadinhas: numenius@cnc.uc.pt
Fighting infection PDBEB
(5-9 March 2018)

Nuno Empadinhas (numenius@cnc.uc.pt) CNC, University of Coimbra


Akhilesh Rai, CNC, UC-Biotech ORCID
Ana Eulálio, CNC, UC-Biotech ORCID
Ana Maranha, CNC, University of Coimbra ORCID
André Buret, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada ResearchGate
Douglas Kell, The University of Manchester, United Kingdom ORCID
Gabriela J. Silva, CNC & FFUC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Inês Baldeiras, CNC & FMUC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Irina Moreira, CNC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Isaura Simões, CNC, UC-Biotech ORCID
John D. Marugg, CNC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Margarida Correia-Neves, EM/ICVS, University of Minho ORCID
Maria Manuel Silva, CNC & FFUC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Miguel Mano, CNC, UC-Biotech ORCID
Nuno Empadinhas, CNC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Olga Borges, CNC & FFUC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Paula Veríssimo, CNC & FCTUC, University of Coimbra ORCID
Paula Videira, UCIBIO, FCT-NOVA, Lisbon ORCID
Raquel Duarte, CHVNG/E & University of Porto ORCID
Ricardo Vieira Pires, CNC, UC-Biotech ORCID
Rita de Sousa, INSA-National Health Institute, Lisbon ResearchGate
Sandra de Macedo Ribeiro, IBMC/i3S, University of Porto ORCID
Sandra Morais Cardoso, CNC & FMUC, Univeristy of Coimbra ORCID
Serge Mostowy, Imperial College London, United Kingdom ORCID
Susana Alarico, CNC, University of Coimbra ORCID

Infectious diseases remain a leading cause of death in the 21st century. The World Health Organization analysis of "Global Antimicrobial Resistance" confirms the pessimism: antimicrobial resistance has gone from a worrying projection to the greatest health threat mankind will face in the coming decades. To aggravate this situation, the aging population and escalation of chronic diseases worldwide are major risk factors for the spread of infectious agents. Paradoxically, hospitals disseminate resistance but intervention policies fall far short of the actual and urgent needs. Without new antimicrobial strategies, medical achievements of the 20th century such as surgeries, transplants or chemotherapy will be unthinkable, bringing us back to the “dark ages” of medicine. The course will recall how antibiotics forged in ancestral microbial "wars" fostered huge medical conquests and how their misuse has been making them responsible for disrupting the human microbiome with serious health consequences. Lectures by expert scientists will cover diverse agents of infection (bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoa and prions) as well as some host responses, and highlight the innovative antimicrobial strategies that are in place, taking advantage of cutting edge technologies at cellular and molecular levels. Students are expected to participate interactively in the classes and to complete a final test focused on the topics they were exposed to in the course.


Monday 5 – Microbiota and antibiotic resistance

09:30 Introduction (Nuno Empadinhas)
10:00 A brave new world of microbiome-host interactions shaping health and (all sorts of) diseases (Nuno Empadinhas)
10:45 The Era of ESKAPES: will we go back to the pre-antibiotic Age? (Susana Alarico)
11:30 Food-borne pathogens: molecular detection and risk assessment (John D. Marugg)

15:00 SEMINAR: Enteropathogens shape microbiota biofilms: New insights into the causes of post-infectious inflammation (André Buret)
16:00 Antimicrobial resistance mechanisms and epidemiology: a one-health approach (Gabriela Silva)

Tuesday 6 – (Re)Emerging pathogens

10:00 Tuberculosis and nontuberculous mycobacteria: epidemiology and risk factors (Raquel Duarte)
10:45 Tuberculosis: a zoonotic disease difficult to digest (Margarida Correia-Neves)
11:30 The unique biology of mycobacteria reveals new targets for drug discovery (Nuno Empadinhas)

14:30 The BEB microbiome (biobanking) (Susana Alarico)

Wednesday 7 (UC-Biotech) - Unconventional strategies

09:30 High-content screenings for infection biology (Miguel Mano)
10:30 New roles for the cytoskeleton in cellular immunity (Serge Mostowy)
11:30 SEMINAR: Use of cytoskeleton to control Shigella infection (Serge Mostowy)

14:30 Rickettsiae: old vector-borne pathogens with a lot to reveal (still) on obligate intracellular lifestyle (Isaura Simões)
15:30 Immunotargeting surface-exposed virulence proteins (Ricardo Pires)
16:30 Nanoparticles functionalized with antimicrobial peptides (Akhilesh Rai)

Thursday 8 - Eukaryotic and viral pathogens

09:00 Design and synthesis of new antimalarials (Maria Manuel Silva)
09:45 Data-driven drug discovery applied to infection: targeting influenza proteins (Irina Moreira)
11:00 In the search of an oral hepatitis B vaccine (Olga Borges)
11:45 Ser or Leu: ambiguous translation in Candida albicans virulence factors (Sandra de Macedo Ribeiro)

14:30 Global challenges and trends in emerging viral diseases (Rita de Sousa)
15:30 Social program

Friday 9 – Host responses

09:00 MicroRNAs as novel players in bacterial pathogen-host interaction (Ana Eulálio)
09:45 Triple A: Allergy, Allergens and Allergic inflammation (Paula Veríssimo)
10:30 Dendritic cells in immunity: immunomodulation, evasion and the case of Burkholderia cenocepacia in cystic fibrosis (Paula Videira)
11:15 Human prion diseases – a transmissible form of neurodegeneration (Inês Baldeiras)
12:00 Sterile infection in neurodegeneration or the “Mitochondriaceae” (Sandra M. Cardoso)

14:00 SEMINAR: A dormant blood microbiome, host iron dysregulation and LPS-induced coagulopathies underpin a large range of chronic, inflammatory diseases: a systems biology approach (Douglas B. Kell)
15:00 Evaluation test & perspectives

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