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Upcoming Seminar: Leighton Payne

Posted by Microbiology on 7 August 2023 | Comments

1:00 pm, Monday, 7 August
Room BIG13, Ground Floor
Biochemistry Building
710 Cumberland St

Leighton Payne
Microbiology & Immunology

The antiviral immune systems
of prokaryotes

Viruses are a pervasive threat for all cellular organisms. For bacteria and archaea, viral infection typically concludes with cell death. Over billions of years of co-evolution between viruses and prokaryotes, this selection pressure has steered the emergence of diverse molecular immune (or defence) systems that protect the host from infection. In the last five years there has been a major resurgence of interest in discovering and characterising new types of defence systems. Interest driven by the biotechnological applications of defence systems (e.g. restriction enzymes and CRISPR-Cas), hopes to gain insight into potential barriers for phage therapy, and efforts to understand the origins of our own immune systems. In this seminar, I will discuss our development of the Prokaryotic Antiviral Defence LOCator (PADLOC), a tool that makes new defence system knowledge useful and accessible to a variety of microbiologists. Mainly, I will focus on how PADLOC has facilitated our discovery of several new types of defence systems and our prediction of hundreds of additional defence system candidates. Come and learn about our new discoveries in the billion-year war between viruses and prokaryotes and find out how you can expose the antiviral armour of your own favourite bacteria and archaea