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Jeffrey J. Byrd
Professor
jjbyrd@smcm.edu
Biology Department
St. Mary’s College of Maryland
Chickens and Humans and Pigs, Oh My!: A Case Study About Influenza

Influenza is a common topic in the popular press and a point of interest for many students.  This case study was written to promote interdisciplinary connections between upper division virology and immunology classes.  Students that participate in this case will address many important concepts, including antigenic shift/drift, reassortment of viral antigens, viral entry via sialic acid residues, vaccinations, and pandemics.  Developed in an interrupted case format, instructors may use the case in its entirety or portions that are relevant for their own needs. The case would be appropriate for us in immunology, virology or microbiology courses.


Hidden in Plain Sight: Immune Evasion by Herpes Simplex-1 Virus

As nonliving entities, viruses face specific challenges when replicating in a host.  Avoiding the host immune system is something that every virus aims for in order to successfully reproduce itself and infect another host.  Many viruses replicate quickly and leave the host before a full immune response has been achieved.  In contrast, the Herpesviridae remain in the host for life, using latency and periodic reactivation events to spread viral particles while avoiding the memory immune response.  This case study explores specific immune evasion mechanisms of herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1), which is the causative agent of cold sores and is estimated to be present in upwards of 50% of the human population.  The case also considers anti-viral therapies and the resulting effects on HSV-1 replication and dissemination. Written to promote interdisciplinary connections between an upper-division virology class and an immunology class, the case is the second case in a set of three cases. The other two cases, also published on this site, include "Chickens and Humans and Pigs... Oh My!" and "Retro Goes Modern: The Evolution and Evasive Maneuvers of HIV."


Retro Goes Modern: The Evolution and Evasive Maneuvers of HIV

This case study considers the evolution of HIV from SIV, as well as the evolution of HIV within humans by mutation rate. It also discusses the immune evasion proteins NEF and VPU, and how anti-retroviral drugs act to stall viral replication. Finally, the case looks at current strategies for developing an HIV vaccine, and the challenges we face in bringing a cure for HIV to fruition. Written to promote interdisciplinary connections between an upper-division virology class and an immunology class, the case is the second case in a set of three case studies. The other two cases, also published on this site, include "Chickens and Humans and Pigs... Oh My!" and "Hidden in Plain Sight: Immune Evasion by Herpes Simplex-1 Virus."