Judy Sakanari, PhDFilariasis Core Director, CDIPD,UCSF
I am the lead scientist for the Bill & Melinda Gates funded project to screen compounds with Brugia malayi, the roundworm that causes the disease known as lymphatic filariasis or elephantiasis. Our team recently developed a low cost and simple visual imaging system that utilizes a novel software program to capture video recordings to assay compounds with these large worms. Rather than using laborious and subjective methods of analyzing the data, our method allows us to quantify each worm’s movement simultaneously, on an entire plate, with each plate taking only a few seconds to read.
My research also involves other parasite projects including the development of a schistosome cell line for use in drug discovery and screening studies and characterizing various parasite proteins as potential drug targets.
In addition, for the past 15 years, I have taught a Medical Parasitology course at U.C. Berkeley. This is an intensive 6-week summer session course covering medically important helminthic and protozoan parasites that cause morbidity and mortality worldwide. Students learn about the epidemiology, pathogenesis and diagnosis of the infections as well as the ecology and evolution of the host-parasite relationship.
PublicationsA cysteine protease inhibitor rescues mice from a lethal Cryptosporidium parvum infection. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2013 Dec;57(12):6063-73.
Proteomic analysis of human skin treated with larval schistosome peptidases reveals distinct invasion strategies among species of blood flukes. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2011 Sep;5(9):e1337.
Cysteine protease inhibitors as chemotherapy: lessons from a parasite target. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1999 Sep 28;96(20):11015-22
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