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About

Laura Piel is a PhD student that has started her scientific career with a master internship in Gerald Späth’s unit of Molecular Parasitology and Signalling working on the characterization of leishmanicidal activity of new compounds on Leishmania donovani and Leishmania amazonensis. She is currently working on Leishmania culture adaptation and virulence. Her work is based on the progressive loss of L. donovani infectivity during culture adaptation due to fitness trade off. She set up experiments to study phenotypic differences between virulent promastigotes derived from hamster splenic amastigotes and attenuated long-term cultured parasites in terms of resistance to different forms of stress, metacyclogenesis, host subversion and infectivity. In order to understand the mechanisms underlying the loss of infectivity and identify novel virulence factors, she generated a cosmid library using genomic DNA using virulent promastigotes, transfected in attenuated parasites and injected in hamsters for in vivo selection of cosmids carrying virulence factors.

Projects

CV

Education

  • 2015/2019: PhD “Phenotypic and functional genetic analysis of virulence attenuation of Leishmania donovani  
  • 2014: Master degreeInfectious agents: interaction with their hosts and the environment” (second year), University of Versailles-Saint-Quentin (France), head of class with honors
  • 2012: Master degreeAptitude for teaching in primary school” (first year), University of Cergy-Pontoise (France), magna cum laude
  • 2011: Bachelor’s DegreeEnvironmental biology, University of Nantes (France) cum laude including a semester at the University of Tromsø in Norway (ERASMUS exchange)

Teaching activities

  • Technical teaching of a researcher from the Oswaldo Cruz Institut (Fiocruz, Bresil) – 3 months : cloning and bone-marrow derived macrophages
  • Co-supervisor of a Master 2 student from Pierre et Marie Curie University (Paris) – 6 months
  • Supervisor of 3rd year bachelor student from Paris Diderot University – 2 weeks

Communication

  • Trypanosomatids meeting, 2017, Institut Pasteur Paris: oral communication
  • WorldLeish, 2017, Tolède (Spain): poster
  • Future of Parasitology, 2017, Institut Pasteur Paris: poster
  • Trypanomatids meeting, 2016, Institut Pasteur Paris: poster
  • BSP Trypanosomiasis and Leishmaniasis Seminar 2016, 2016, Budweiss (République Tchèque): poster

Grants

  • 2019: FRM grant for 9 month  
  • 2016: BSP meeting award
  • 2015: PhD fellowship from the Ministère de l’Enseignement Supérieur, de la Recherche et de l’Innovation

Professional experiences

  • 2015: Six months internship at the Institut Pasteur (Paris), Unit of Molecular Parasitology and Signaling headed by Gerald Spaeth, on “Identification of putative virulence factors in Leishmania donovani using a gain-of-function approach” applying in vitro phenotypic characterization, western blot analysis and macrophage infections.
  • 2014: Two months internship at the University of Versailles Saint-Quentin (France), Unit of Physiopathology and Diagnostic of Microbes Infections headed by Jean-Louis Herrmann, on “Identification of the Mycobacterium abscessus genes involved in intracellular survival using a transposon-based mutagenesis approach” applying macrophage and amoeba infections, identification of the transposon insertion for selected clones.
  • 2013: Two months internship at the University of Würzburg (Germany), Department of Cell and Developmental Biology headed by Markus Engstler, on  “Functional genetic analysis of ESAG10 (Expression Site associated Gene 10) of Trypanosoma brucei” using knock-out and knock-in approaches.
  • 2013: Two months internship at the Institut Pasteur (Paris), Unit of Molecular Parasitology and Signaling headed by Gerald Spaeth., on “Characterization of leishmanicidal activity of new compounds on the different life stages of Leishmania donovani and Leishmania amazonensis using a biochemical approach” determining parasite cell death using an enzymatic viability assay.

Publications

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