Julie Moore, professor and chair

Mentor
Julie Moore, professor and chair
Project Title
Pathogenesis of malaria in pregnancy
College
College of Veterinary Medicine
Time Commitment
Variable
Method
Research Credit
Location of Research
On-Campus
Possible Co-Authorship
Yes

Project Description

Malaria infection caused by Plasmodium falciparum infection during pregnancy produces profound placental dysfunction, leading to poor birth outcomes such as intrauterine growth restriction and preterm labor, yielding low birth weight infants. “Placental malaria” is characterized by maternal inflammatory responses, including cellular infiltrate in the placenta, hypercoagulation with excessive fibrin deposition, oxidative stress, and cell death. Understanding these phenomena – how they are initiated, propagated, and interrelated to yield placental dysfunction – forms the foundation of the work in my laboratory. We use a combination of human samples (from women naturally exposed to malaria in Kenya), in vitro placental cell culture systems, and mouse models to probe mechanisms in placental malaria pathogenesis.

The proposed project for a CUR student is to work in the mouse models we have generated to explore the efficacy of combination drug treatments targeting two or more of the pathogenic pathways we have identified to improve pregnancy outcomes in the context of malaria infection. The work will enable the student to develop skills in murine malaria model systems, mouse handling and breeding/pregnancy outcomes, and gain familiarity with flow cytometry, microscopy, placental histopathology, and potentially immunohistochemistry.

Additional Requirements
None

Contact Information

Email Address
juliemoore@ufl.edu
Phone Number
  • juliemoore@ufl.edu
  • Malaria infection caused by Plasmodium falciparum infection during pregnancy produces profound placental dysfunction, leading to poor birth outcomes such as intrauterine growth restriction and preterm labor, yielding low birth weight infants. “Placental malaria” is characterized by maternal inflammatory responses, including cellular infiltrate in the placenta, hypercoagulation with excessive fibrin deposition, oxidative stress, and cell death. Understanding these phenomena – how they are initiated, propagated, and interrelated to yield placental dysfunction – forms the foundation of the work in my laboratory. We use a combination of human samples (from women naturally exposed to malaria in Kenya), in vitro placental cell culture systems, and mouse models to probe mechanisms in placental malaria pathogenesis.

    The proposed project for a CUR student is to work in the mouse models we have generated to explore the efficacy of combination drug treatments targeting two or more of the pathogenic pathways we have identified to improve pregnancy outcomes in the context of malaria infection. The work will enable the student to develop skills in murine malaria model systems, mouse handling and breeding/pregnancy outcomes, and gain familiarity with flow cytometry, microscopy, placental histopathology, and potentially immunohistochemistry.

  • None