The antiviral escape research group focuses on HIV, viral hepatitis and cytomegalovirus infections, which may appear as life-threatening diseases and are a major global health problem. Worldwide HIV has infected an estimated 33 million people of whom 2 million die of AIDS each year. An even larger number of two billion individuals have been infected with hepatitis B virus (HBV) and more than 350 million people suffer from chronic HBV infection. Infection with Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is present in more than 200 million people, mostly as a chronic infection. Cytomegalovirus infection (CMV) is globally present in 40% of adults. Infection with CMV is usually unnoticed but can be life-threatening in immunocompromised patients, such as transplant recipients.
Specific antiviral drugs have been developed to target these viruses. Unfortunately, antiviral escape has been described for all drugs and this is the focus of our research group. Our translational research is performed at the interface between fundamental and clinical research and is centred in four research lines:
Monique Nijhuis, Rob Schuurman, Noortje van Maarseveen, Greet Boland, Sue Aitken, Axel Fun, Dorien de Jong, Marieke Pingen, Pauline Schipper, Jori Symons, Petra van Ham, Antoinet van Kessel, Steven van Lelyveld and Anne Wensing.
- Mechanisms and evolution of antiviral escape
- Identification of the source of persistent viremia during therapy
- Transmission of drug resistant virus and
- Evaluation and prevention of antiviral drug resistance in resource poor settings