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October 2023
Microbiology JGV Roadshow

JGV is on the road again - this time in Surrey where a mix of local speakers and JGV editors discuss latest advances in their research. The day was finished off by my colleague Greg Towers beautifully describing how viruses are perfect molecular machines to understand cell biology.

September 2023
New Paper

Excited for our latest offering from Becky who has been investigating the interaction of two viral promoters that regulate reactivation and have a very complex relationship. Read all about it below!

Repression of the major immediate early promoter of human cytomegalovirus allows transcription from an alternate promoter | Microbiology Society (

Does HCMV have multiple escape routes? | Microbiology Society

Well Done, Anastasia!

Congratulations to Ana who came second in the Young Microbiologist of the Year Competition. A well deserved achievement - particularly impressive considering Ana was only 18 months into her PhD project at the time of her nomination. Well done!

July 2023
IHW time!

It's time for the IHW (Missoula) and, more importantly, the Herpetic Legion on the next leg of their persistence tour! Great science and good to see old friends again and make some new ones - and probably drink too much.

June 2023
More Paper News! 

We are pleased to share our latest offering detailing our ongoing attempts to understand vaccine induced immunity against HCMV. This time we have identified we can see low levels of neutralising antibodies if we change the temperature we perform a neutralisation assay in gB vaccine recipients. Characterising what those antibodies could be is high on the agenda!

A temperature-dependent virus-binding assay reveals the presence of neutralizing antibodies in human cytomegalovirus gB vaccine recipients’ sera | Microbiology Society (

How do you vaccinate against a master of immune evasion? | Microbiology Society

April 2023
Microbiology society Annual Meeting 

Ines, Ana and Steph all gave great talks at the meeting and extra congratulations to Ana who was also nominated for the Young Microbiologist of the Year - to be decided at the Showcase scheduled for October. Also our newest honorary lab member was in attendance and it seems Isla was the star of the show!

More Exciting Paper News!

Congratulations to Matt M, Ellie, Oliver and Claire as well as a number of students on the publication of our latest contribution in the Journal of Biological Chemistry concerning changes in host miRNA expression induced when HCMV first enters CD34+ cells. This really was a Covid inspired project as a lot of in silico work resulted in the identification of calcium channels as regulators of HCMV reactivation.

In silico interrogation of the miRNAome of infected hematopoietic cells to predict processes important for human cytomegalovirus latent infection - PubMed (

Welcome Mara and Yanjing

We welcome Mara-Jade and Yanjing to the lab who will be carrying out their MSc projects with us. They will both be measuring regulators of HCMV spread in culture but one is looking at antibodies and t'other looking at pharmacological approaches. Good luck with your projects.

March 2023
Steph wins prize at British Transplant Society meeting

Congratulations to Steph who won a poster

prize for her work on correlating the identity of

humoral immunity with the incidence of BK

viremia  post renal transplant. Well done!

More Exciting Paper News!

Congratulations to Calum on the publication of our latest contribution concerning the role of tissue resident NK cells and the potential to control HCMV infection in donor organs destined for transplant. This was a fantastic collaboration with Victoria Male (Imperial) and can all immunology questions be directed to either Calum or Viki!

Control of human cytomegalovirus replication by liver resident natural killer cells | Nature Communications

Welcome Aisha! Goodbye Claire!

We welcome Aisha to the laboratory this month - Aisha is supported by a PhD scholarship from the Qatari Embassy and will be working on the mechanisms controlling HCMV reactivation which will build on the work she carried out for her MSc project back in 2022.

Better get cracking!

On a bittersweet note we say goodbye to Claire but, at the same time, are excited that she is taken up a lecturer position at London Southbank University. Claire will continue to collaborate with us though so she is not gone completely!

February 2023
Exciting Paper News!

Finally Ariane's paper on the AD6 response we identified in our gB vaccine recipients has been accepted and published in Nature Communications! A lot of hard work has gone into this and it's great to see it out. This was a team effort with Ana, Claire & Ilona contributing to the story.

The cytomegalovirus gB/MF59 vaccine candidate induces antibodies against an antigenic domain controlling cell-to-cell spread | Nature Communications

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