At the 6th annual Vaccine Development Center of San Antonio Conference, Oct. 15-16, 2017 at the Menger Hotel, two representatives from Texas Biomedical Research Institute gave prize-winning presentations.

Dr. Larry Schlesinger and Joanne Turner, Ph.D., at the Conference.

Hanna Scinto (Virology & Immunology, Ruth Ruprecht, M.D., Ph.D. lab) earned third place for her oral presentation “A Novel Strategy to Adapt SHIV-E1 carrying Env from an RV144 Volunteer to Rhesus.” Julia Scordo (Tuberculosis, Jordi Torrelles, Ph.D. lab) received second place for her poster presentation “The Human Lung Mucosa Dictates Mycobacterium tuberculosis Infection Outcome in the Alveolar Epithelium.”

Other oral presenters from Texas Biomed:

Veronica Obregon-Perko: “Adaptation of SIV to Baboon PBMC or Isolated CD4 Cells: Insight into Cell Types Required for Baboon Resistance to SIV Infection”

Kendra Alfson: “A Single-Amino Acid Change in the Marburg Virus Glycoprotein Arises during Serial Cell Culture Passages and Attenuates the Virus in a Macaque Model of Disease”

Eusondia Arnett, Ph.D.: “PPARy is Critical for M. tuberulosis Induction of Mcl-1 and Limitation of Human Macrophage Apototosis”

Other poster presentations from Texas Biomed:

Hanna Scinto won third place for her oral presentation at the Conference.

Manasai Tamhankar: “Ebola Entry and Egress in Polarized Epithelial Cells”

Lisa Smith: “SIV-Specific RNA-Guided Cas9 Nucleases and Paired Nickases Inhibit SIV Replication through Proviral Genome Editing”

Ashley Silva: “Investigating the Biogensis of EBOV-encoded Small RNAs during Infection”

Juan Moliva: “Pulmonary Immunization with Selectively Delipidated M. bovis BCG Averts Lung Immunopathology and Increases Vaccine Efficacy against M. tuberculosis

Varun Dwivedi: “Blockade of Interleukin-10 Signaling during BCG Vaccination Enhances Protection against Mycobacterium tuberculosis Infection in Mice”

Manu Anantpadma: “Identification of Novel Inhibitors of Lassa virus Entry by High Throughout Screening”

The Vaccine Conference is a collaboration:

Texas Biomed is one of four local institutions that make up the Vaccine Development Center of San Antonio. UTSA, UTHSC, and SwRI are the other partners.

The Center fosters cross city collaborations, while the Scientific Co-Directors coordinate the projects at each organization in order to promote excellence in vaccine research and development.

Jean Patterson, Ph.D., served on the Conference Committee. The keynote speakers address topics ranging from gut microbiota to vaccine preventable zoonoses.

Texas Biomed was well-represented at the two day event, with several oral presenters and more than ten poster presentations.

The Vaccine Development Center of San Antonio was formed in 2012. The four participating research institutions wanted to find a way to “facilitate new discoveries and eliminate duplication of resources” in infectious disease research and vaccine development.

In addition to hosting this annual conference, the Vaccine Development Center of San Antonio funds pilot projects and publicly promotes the use of vaccines as a public health tool in San Antonio and around South Texas. Grants and charitable support cover the costs of their mission-oriented initiatives.