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Characterization and identification of Th profiles from pregnancy to puerperium
Portugal ( PorMSIC) - Nova University of Lisbon, Lisbon
CEDOC Immunology Laboratory | NOVA Medical School|Faculdade de Ciências Médicas
Professor Luís Miguel Borrego
Professor Catarina Martins
French, English, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian
Type of Research Project
- Clinical Project with Laboratory work
What is the background of the project?
The survival of a semiallogeneic fetus is a unique immunological challenge during pregnancy. Our group aims to better understand how the immune system is modulated during pregnancy to assure fetal tolerance until birth. We have already characterized several fluctuations in distinct circulating compartments of cells, such as B cells and regulatory T and B cells. Now, we intend to access also other immune mediators that contribute to the ultimate profile of immune responses along pregnancy and postpartum period. We hope our studies will bring new insights into the immunology of pregnancy, that can further be applied to prevent or diagnose obstetrical complications, such as miscarriage, preeclampsia, and preterm labor.
What is the aim of the project?
The aim of the project is to understand how the immune system and Th-related cytokines are modulated from the third trimester until the puerperium period to assure fetal tolerance.
What techniques and methods are used?
The project will use Flow Cytometry Multiplex immunoassays and Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) to quantify cytokines in body fluids and tissue culture samples of pregnant women. After the collection of the data regarding the quantity of Th-related cytokines involved in the allergic reactions throught the techniques mention above, it will be done a data analysis using SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences), a program for statistical data analysis. Depending on the progress of the project at the time of arrival, the student will be involved in sample collection and manipulation for analysis or the analysis of the data collected.
What is the role of the student?
- The student will observe the practical experiments but will be highly involved in the analysis of the results
- The tasks of the student will be performed on his/her own
- The tasks will be done under supervision
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
The student will be responsible to manage samples to be evaluated (separate, frozen and defronzen, prepare). In the context of the assays, the student will perform the laboratory protocols (managing generic laboratory equipment), and also will be trained to operate with the flow cytometer in which samples will be acquired. After sample processing, the student will be expected to perform data analysis and assay validation. Moreover, statistical analysis of results and a brief report discussing it shall be prepared by the student until the end of the traineeship.
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
Yes. A basic course in laboratory biosafety will be administered to the student. Also, the most important concepts of Basic Immunology will be reviewed in small talks, as well as a review on the data obtained in the context of this project.
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- The student will prepare a poster - The student will prepare a scientific report - The student’s name will be mentioned in a future publication
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
Theoretical knowledge of Immunology and basic immunoassay principles
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts: - Medical students - Graduated students (less than 6 months) - Pre-Medical students from the American-British system
- Lima J; Martins C; Nunes G; Sousa MJ; Branco JC; Borrego LM; Regulatory T Cells Show Dynamic Behavior During Late Pregnancy; Delivery; and the Postpartum Period. DOI: 10.1177/1933719116676395
- Jorge Lima; Catarina Martins; Maria J. Leandro; Glória Nunes; Maria-José Sousa; Jorge C. Branco; Luís Miguel Borrego; Characterization of B cells in healthy pregnant women from late pregnancy to post-partum: a prospective observational study DOI: 10.1186/s12884-016-0927-7
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