Invertebrate infection biology – Söderhäll Lab
We are investigating innate immune reactions in invertebrates and compare these reactions with those present in vertebrates. One example is melanization; a reaction that is present in virtually all organisms, but detailed studies on this reaction is mainly performed in crustaceans and a few insects. We use molecular and cell biological methods and investigate how microorganisms, such as fungi, bacteria and viruses interact with crayfish as host animals. An important process that we study is how blood cell-forming stem cells develop into mature blood cells and how this process is affected by various infections. If you are interested in hematopoiesis in these animals read more here.
Melanization by the proPO-cascade is an important defence response and the products of this reaction are functioning as antimicrobial peptides and perform important biological functions.
We investigate the mechanism by which fungi and bacteria infect crustaceans, and the way in which these animals kill fungi and becteria. We have isolated and characterized several antifungal and antibacterial peptides.
We study how development of blood cells (hemocyte) is regulated at the molecular level, and we have discovered a group of cytokines, astakines, involved in this process.
Antibiotics as pollution
We study the effects of antibiotic-polluted environments on crustacean intestinal microbiome, the innate immunity and susceptibility to diseases.
Our research is founded by The Swedish Research Council VR, Formas and Carl Tryggers Foundation.
If you are interested in our resaerch and would like to do a degree project (Bacheler/Master) or research internship contact Irene Söderhäll
The N-terminal peptide generated after activation of prophenoloxidase affects crayfish hematopoiesis. Read the article here.