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CLASS: Dr Rachel McLoughlin, Trinity College Dublin

Date: 05 December 2017

Venue: UCD Conway Lecture Theatre

Time: 12 noon

SpeakerDr Rachel McLoughlin, Trinity College Dublin

Title: 'The search for a Staphylococcus aureus vaccine: Is it even possible?'

Abstract: The WHO highlights the epidemic of antibiotic resistance in Staphylococcus aureus as a global concern, strongly advocating for the development of alternatives to antibiotics, such as an anti-S.aureus vaccine. To facilitate this, a more lucid understanding of how the bacterium interacts with the host must first be established. Over the past 12 years there have been a number of attempts to develop vaccines against S. aureus however all have failed in the clinical trial process. There are a number of reasons for this but paramount has been, a lack of understanding of what constitutes a protective immune response against this bacterium. Historically it was assumed that because S. aureus is an extracellular bacterium, antibodies should be sufficient to protect the host from infection. However, we now know that T-cells are critical for regulating phagocytic cell responses that are necessary to control S. aureus infection. Consequently, next generation anti-S. aureus vaccine will be required to induce protective cellular in addition to humoral immune responses. This however may not be the end of the story. In addition to being a lethal opportunistic pathogen S. aureus is also part of the normal human microbiome. This means that humans have evolved with the bacterium. As a consequence of this S. aureus possess an impressive arsenal of immune evasion strategies that can manipulate or inhibit our immune responses. Therefore, we ask the question will it ever really be possible to vaccinate against this bacterium?


Refreshments available outside the lecture theatre from 11.40am

12 Dr. Ian Macaulay, Earlham Institute

Associate sponsors of the Conway Lecture & Seminar Series 2017/2018

BioSciences  Cruinn Diagnostics Ltd ‌



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