Virus Research Unit
+64 (3) 479-7723
Exploitation of viral-derived factors to study and treat human disease
Year of Appointment
BSc Hons, PhD (Otago)
Viruses produce an array of factors that prime our cells to support virus production while subverting our anti-viral defence systems. My research focuses on three overlapping themes; how do viral factors manipulate the cells around them, what does this tell us about our own physiology and can we exploit this knowledge or the viral factors themselves to develop new drugs for treating other human pathologies.
I was a key researcher in the functional characterisation of the viral family of vascular endothelial growth factors and a range of anti-inflammatory factors encoded by the parapoxviruses. My work currently focuses on viral manipulation of the inflammatory and wound healing responses in the skin, and the use of viral-derived factors as bio-therapeutics for clinically relevant skin wounds and inflammatory disorders.
Wise, L.M., Inder, M.K., Real, N.C., Stuart, G.S., Fleming, S.B., and Mercer, A.A. 2012. The vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-E encoded by orf virus regulates keratinocyte proliferation and migration and promotes epidermal regeneration. Cellular Microbiology 14(9):1376-90.
Lateef, Z., Baird, M.A., Wise, L.M., Young, S., Mercer, A.A. and Fleming, S.B. 2010. The chemokine binding protein encoded by the poxvirus orf inhibits recruitment of dendritic cells to sites of skin inflammation and migration to peripheral lymph nodes. Cellular Microbiology 12(5):665-76.
Deane, D., Ueda, N., Wise, L.M., Wood, A.R., Percival, A., Jepson, C., Inglis, N.F., Fleming, S.B., Mercer, A.A. and McInnes, C.J. 2009. Conservation and variation of the parapoxvirus GM-CSF-inhibitory factor (GIF) proteins. J. Gen. Virol. 90:970-977.
Wise, L., McCaughan, C., Tan, C.K., Mercer, A.A. and Fleming, S.B. 2007. Orf virus interleukin-10 inhibits cytokine synthesis in activated human THP-1 monocytes, but only partially impairs their proliferation. J. Gen. Virol. 88(6):1677-82.
Makinen, T., Veikkola, T., Mustjoki, S., Karpanen, T., Catimel, B., Nice, E. C., Wise, L., Mercer, A., Kowalski, H., Kerjaschki, D., Stacker, S. A., Achen, M. G. and Alitalo, K. 2001. Isolated lymphatic endothelial cells transduce growth, survival and migratory signals via the VEGF-C/D receptor VEGFR-3. Embo J. 20(17):4762-73.
Wise, L. M., Veikkola, T., Mercer, A. A., Savory, L. J., Fleming, S. B., Caesar, C., Vitali, A., Makinen, T., Alitalo, K. and Stacker, S. A. 1999. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-like protein from orf virus NZ2 binds to VEGFR2 and neuropilin-1. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. (USA) 96(6):3071-6.