Amebas de Vida Libre

FOTO PRESENTACIÓN GRUPO

Bienvenidos a la página de Laboratorio de Amebas de Vida Libre del IUETSPC

Welcome to the homepage of IUETSPC-Free-Living Amoebae Research Lab

 

Líneas de investigación

Main research interests

 

Nuestro grupo de investigación trabaja en protozoos emergentes, principalmente amebas de vida libre tales como  Acanthamoeba, Balamuthia mandrillaris y Naegleria fowleri. Estas amebas se encuentran ampliamente distribuidas en el ambiente (aguas, suelos, polvo, aire acondicionado) y son capaces de causar encefalitis letales en humanos y otros animales. Acanthamoeba es además causante de queratitis amebianas sobre todo en usuarios de lentes de contacto que pueden desencadenar en ceguera.

En nuestro grupo trabajamos en el aislamiento y caracterización molecular (genotipado, capacidad patógena) de amebas de vida libre de origen ambiental y clínico principalmente Acanthamoeba y Balamuthia mandrillaris además de los patógenos que pueden transportar las mismas en su interior.

Otra línea en la que centramos nuestros esfuerzos es en la búsqueda de nuevas terapias frente a amebas de vida libre (quimioterapia y terapia génica) y quimioterapias frente a Leishmania.

Las amebas de vida libre son también causantes de patologías y alta mortalidad en animales marinos, por lo que otra de nuestras líneas está enfocada al estudio de fenómenos de mortalidad y patogenicidad de amebas de vida libre en peces y equinodermos y al aislamiento y caracterización molecular de patógenos amebianos en estos organismos.

Our research group works on emerging protozoa, mainly free-living amoebae such as Acanthamoeba , Balamuthia mandrillaris and Naegleria fowleri . These amoebae are widely distributed in the environment (water, soil , dust , air conditioning) and are capable of causing lethal encephalitis in humans and other animals. Acanthamoeba also causes amoebic keratitis especially in contact lens wearers that may even end up in blindness.

In our group we work on the isolation and molecular characterization (genotyping , pathogenicity) of free-living amoebae, mainly Acanthamoeba and Balamuthia mandrillaris from environmental and clinical sources and also in pathogens that these amoeba could harbour.

Another line that we are focusing our efforts is in the search for new therapies against free-living amoebae (chemotherapy and gene therapy-siRNA) and chemotherapy against Leishmania  species.

The free-living amoebae are also causing diseases and high mortality in marine animals, so another of our lines is focused on the study of phenomena of mortality and pathogenicity of free-living amoebae in fish and echinoderms and the isolation and molecular characterization of amoebic pathogens in these organisms.

Miembros del Equipo de Investigación/ Research team members

Jose
Dr José E. Piñero

Profesor Titular de Parasitología

Jacob
Dr Jacob Lorenzo Morales

Investigador Ramón y Cajal

El Dr. Jacob Lorenzo Morales, se reincorporó al IUETSPC en enero de 2012 con un contrato de investigador Ramón y Cajal, para dirigir el laboratorio de amebas de vida libre del mismo centro, tras una estancia postdoctoral en la University of Edinburgh. Ingresó en el IUETSP en el 2001, iniciando su investigación en amebas de vida libre utilizando herramientas de biología molecular aplicadas a estos protozoos. Tanto sus desplazamientos a otros centros como sus trabajos de investigación se han desarrollado en el campo de las amebas de vida libre y sus patologías. Su investigación se ha centrado en la identificación de amebas de estos grupos y en el empleo de la técnica de ARN de interferencia y quimioterapia para el tratamiento de estos patógenos. Estos resultados se han publicado en numerosos trabajos en revistas del JCR como Genome Biology, Trends in Parasitology, Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy y Archives of Ophthalmology entre otros.

In 2001 I started my PhD Studies in the Department of Parasitology, Ecology and Genetics of the University of La Laguna, working on free-living amoebae from Acanthamoeba genus. During the first years of my PhD thesis, I started to collaborate with the School of Biomedical Sciences of the University of Edinburgh, working on extracellular serine proteases of Acanthamoeba genus and also on improving isolation and storage methods for free-living amoebae for a period of 3 months. In 2004, I was accepted as an Honorary Research Fellow at the Department of Life Sciences of the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica and I was also granted a PhD grant from the Canary Islands government from this stage until the end of my PhD studies. In Jamaica, one of my supervisors and now a great friend Dr John F. Lindo was working on a project on the Epidemiology of Acanthamoeba in this region and we still are!!!.
After this stage, I returned to the University of La Laguna in order to carry on with my PhD studies and research. During this period, in 2005, I started to get interested in RNA interference (RNAi) and I developed siRNAs molecules against extracellular serine proteases of Acanthamoeba. Thus, this paper has established new techniques in the field and has become a standard reference in Acanthamoeba research having been cited many times. It also has proven the serine proteases of Acanthamoeba play a main role in the pathogenesis process of these protozoa. In 2006, I visited the Malaria and Leishmania Research Centre from ministry of health and family welfare of Panjim, Goa, India to gain experience in these pathogens for
2 months. In June 2006, I defended my PhD Thesis and I was granted the highest mark (Sobresaliente cum laude) and the European PhD qualification with international experts on the field such as Dr Naveed A. Khan, Dr Julia Walochnik and Dr Sutherland K Maciver in the examiners commitee. After that, I started a series of different postdoctoral stages at the Centre for Integrative Physiology, School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Edinburgh working on different aspects of the cytoskeleton of Acanthamoeba., I also started to collaborate with the University Institute of Tropical Diseases and Public Health of The Canary Islands (IUETSPC) at the University of La Laguna. I have also been involved in a series of projects that have been granted to IUETSPC including a national network of Tropical Diseases (Redes Temáticas de
Investigación Cooperativa, RECTIS, Enfermedades Tropicales: de la genómica al control). Finally, in December 2009, I was granted a postdoctoral grant to start a new Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the University of Edinburgh before returning home. During the 10 years of my research career, I have published 34 peer-reviewed papers included in JCR. Currently, I am co-supervising four PhD thesis in collaboration with the IUETSPC. We have been recently accepted a patent for a novel drug against Acanthamoeba. Finally, in december 2011 I was granted a Ramón y Cajal Research Fellowship and thus close teh circle and came back to IUETSPC as a Senior Research of the Free Living Amoebae lab where we keep on working on Acanthamoeba. Moreover, we have started some work in other amoebae such as Balamuthia mandrillaris, Naegleria fowleri, Sappinia spp. and marine amoebae with pathogenic capacity against marine animals. The later one in collaboration with the Biodiversity, Marine Ecology and Conservation Research team at the Faculty of Biology of the University of La Laguna...

Will keep you posted on our research adventures!!!

 

Presentaciones y Prensa

http://ullmedia.udv.ull.es/view_item.php?item=O429HUASGNBK&type=videos&collection=33

http://www.fundacionareces.es/fundacionareces/portal.do?IDM=179&NM=2

http://www.europapress.es/salud/investigacion/noticia-investigan-uso-estatinas-eliminar-patogenos-provocan-infeccion-cornea-20130618114347.html

http://www.canarias2punto0.com/investigacion/

http://jovenesinvestigadoresparasitologia.org/2013/09/23/dr-jacob-lorenzo-morales/

http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20111014/social/social2.html

http://es.scribd.com/doc/170109577/Amebas-de-vida-libre-Pato%CC%81genos-emergentes-Dr-Jacob-Lorenzo-Morales

http://es.scribd.com/doc/170124169/Nuevas-Terapias-Frente-a-Acanthamoeba-Dra-Carmen-M-Martin-Navarro

http://es.scribd.com/doc/170124192/Quimioterapias-Frente-a-Leishmania-Spp-Atteneri-Lopez-Arencibia

http://www.decodedscience.com/acanthamoeba-the-parasite-that-eats-eyes/28101

http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/spanish/science/newsid_7682000/7682136.stm

 

iso-8859-1QMarEDa
María Reyes Batlle

Investigadora

Atte
Atteneri López Arencibia

Investigadora

Cheridah3
Cheridah D. Todd

Investigadora

Ines
Ines Sifaoui

Investigadora

Carmen
Dr Carmen Mª Martín Navarro

Investigadora.

Colaboradores
Miss Ines Sifaoui and Dr Manef Abderabba

Universidad de Cartago, Túnez ‡ Natural Sources from Tunisia with leishmacidal and amoebicidal potential

Dr Maryam Niyyati

Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran ‡ Epidemiology and Diagnosis of Free-Living Amoebae

Dr Albrecht Kiderlen

Robert Koch Institute, Berlin, Germany ‡ Pathogenic Free-Living Amoebae

Dr Julia Walochnik

Medical University of Vienna, Austria ‡ Molecular Biology of Free-Living Amoebae

Dr Jose Carlos Hernández and Dr Sabrina Clemente

BIOECOMAC, Universidad de La Laguna ‡ Fenómenos de mortalidad por amebas y otros patógenos en animales marinos de Canarias

Dr Barbara Nowak and Dr Philip Crosbie

University of Tasmania, Australia ‡ Pathogenic Fish Amoebae

Dr Peter Miller

Seattle Structural Genomics Center for Infectious Disease (SSGCID) ‡ Structural genomics of Acanthamoeba

Dr Antonio Osuna

Universidad de Granada ‡ Diagnóstico y Terapia de Amebas de vida libre

Dr Fernando Lares-Villa

Instituto Tecnológico de Sonora, México ‡ Amebas de vida libre patógenas: Acanthamoeba spp. y Balamuthia mandrillaris

Dr Antonnella Mattana

University of Sassari, Sardinia, Italy ‡ Pathogenic Free-Living Amoebae

Dr Maritza Omaña-Molina

UNAM, México ‡ Mecanismos de invasión y patogenicidad de amebas de vida libre

Dr Francisco Arnalich-Montiel

Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Madrid ‡ Queratitis amebianas

Dr Brendan Loftus

University of Dublin, Ireland ‡ Acanthamoeba genome project

Dr Fiona L. Henriquez

University of the West of Scotland, UK ‡ Therapy against Acanthamoeba

Dr John F. Lindo

University of the West Indies, Jamaica ‡ Pathogenic Free-Living Amoebae in the Caribbean

Dr Sutherland K. Maciver

Centre for Integrative Physiology, University of Edinburgh, Uk ‡Free-Living Amoebae: Biology and Therapy