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Professor Brendan Loftus BSc PhD

Research Interests:

I have recently changed my primary research focus into microbial pathogenesis and the use of functional genomics to uncover the complex interplay between host and pathogen during the invasion and persistence processes. 

In particular we are focusing on a subset of intracellular pathogens who display broad host range and perhaps have derived their virulence and pathogenic potential through interaction with non human invertebrate hosts. 

Both the simplicity of using surrogate host systems and the recent advances in genomic and proteomic technologies means it is possible to look at whole host response in tandem with pathogen behaviour during key time points in the infection process. 

 The availability of genetic tools for a number of these hosts also allows for the study of outcomes following the perturbation of pathways or processes found to be of significance. It is hoped that by targeting evolutionarily conserved pathways at the level of pathogen and host broad spectrum targets can be identified. 

In addition to the host-pathogen work, as we run a sequencing core I have collaborations with many groups both inside and outside UCD- working from microbial to human, ancient to modern and genome to transcriptiome

Finally as the Bioinformatics PI of the SFI funded research cluster in Reproductive Biology we are involved in the analysis of large scale transcriptomics datasets using RNA.seq 

Research Projects:

Sponsor : Science Foundation Ireland (SFI)
University College Dublin (UCD)
Title : Next Generation sequencing platform
Start Date / End Date : 01-DEC-07 / 30-MAY-08
Sponsor : Science Foundation Ireland (SFI)
Title : Modelling the whole host response to pathogens
Start Date / End Date : 01-NOV-06 / 31-DEC-12