Prof. Rushika Perera

Prof. Rushika Perera

Arthropod-borne & Infectious Diseases Laboratory Colorado State University, USA

About this Speaker

The research of Dr. Rushika Perera's laboratory is focused on understanding the impact of cellular metabolism on the replication of mosquito- and tick-borne flaviviruses within their vertebrate hosts and Arthropod vectors. Specifically, we use a systems biology approach including metabolomics and proteomics combined with molecular virology, cell biology, biochemistry and structural biology to study flavivirus-host interactions. Similar to other positive strand RNA viruses, flaviviruses cause significant perturbations to the host metabolome to facilitate the formation of replication factories within specialized membrane structures. These structures are required for viral genome replication, assembly and egress. The host metabolome also fulfills the energy requirements for virus replication. Therefore, it is a key avenue to understand the dynamics of virus-host interactions and provides a novel avenue to identify targets for antiviral intervention. The goal of my research is to identify control points in cellular metabolic pathways that are required for virus replication, and evaluate these control points as novel targets for antiviral intervention.

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