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Apr 11, 2022
From 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM


Irah King

Irah King

Parasitic helminths battle type 2 immunity for control of the stem cell niche

Irah King PhD
Associate Professor 
Department of Microbiology and Immunology, McGill University
Meakins-Christie Laboratories, Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre

This conference is organized by Javier Di Noia. It is part of the 2021-2022 IRCM conference calendar.

In person: 
IRCM Auditorium
110, avenue des Pins O, H2W 1R7 Montreal
Wearing a mask is mandatory at all times

Zoom Link :
ID : 952 6976 2104
Code : 476372

The format – virtual or in person – will be established on a case-by-case basis, according to the evolution of public health guidelines in Quebec and in the country of the invited speaker. Please also note that changes in the exact time of the conferences may occur and that it will always be possible to attend via zoom (details to come).

About the conference:
Enteric helminths form intimate physical connections with the intestinal epithelium, yet their ability to directly alter epithelial stem cell fate has not been resolved. Here we demonstrate that infection of mice with the parasite Heligmosomoides polygyrus bakeri (Hpb), reprograms the intestinal epithelium into a fetal-like state marked by the emergence of Clusterin-expressing revival stem cells (revSCs). Organoid-based studies using parasite-derived excretory/secretory products reveal that Hpb-mediated revSC generation occurs independent of host-derived immune signals and inhibits type 2 cytokine-driven differentiation of secretory epithelial lineages that promote their expulsion. Reciprocally, type 2 cytokine signals limit revSC differentiation and, consequently, Hpb fitness indicating that helminths compete with their host for control of the intestinal stem cell niche to promote continuation of their life cycle. 

About Irah King:
Dr. Irah King is an Associate Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, at McGill University. His lab is based at Meakins-Christie Laboratories in the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, where he is the Director of the MI4 Gnotobiotic Animal Research Platform and of the Flow Cytometry Facility. Dr. King holds the Canada Research Chair in Barrier Immunity. The global focus of his research program, supported by CIHR Project Grants, a Discovery Award by NSERC, a Synergy Award from the Kenneth Rainin Foundation and a Seed Grant Award by the McGill Interdisciplinary Initiative in Infection and Immunity, is to elucidate how immune cells promote the generation of protective immune responses against diseases by communicating with their local environment. The innovative and collaborative work of Dr. King has led to publications in high-impact journals such as Cell, Nature Immunology, Nature Communications, PLoS Pathogens, etc.

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