Genomics and Molecular Epidemiology of Human Paramyxoviruses in Croatia - ParamyxoCro

The family Paramyxoviridae harbors a broad spectrum of serious virus pathogens that are of importance to global economics and human health. Paramyxoviruses are RNA viruses with a single-stranded negative sense genome. They have been isolated from a wide variety of species, demonstrating a vast host range and great viral genetic diversity. These ubiquitous pathogens are among the most common causatives of respiratory tract infections and are responsible for a high degree of morbidity and mortality worldwide.

The biology of RNA viruses is influenced by their high potential of continuous evolution. Because of the error-prone nature of their RNA-dependent RNA polymerases and large population sizes, RNA viruses show high levels of genetic diversity. Mutations can significantly influence virus biological properties and lead to appearance of new strains. The knowledge of viral evolution depends on the amount of genomic data available for analysis.

We propose the research of viral genomics of wild type paramyxoviruses currently circulating in Croatia. It is our goal to increase the number of genetically well characterized paramyxoviral wild-type strains. The proposed work will add to knowledge about paramyxoviral ecology, variability and evolutionary capacities. As molecular epidemiologic monitoring of circulating wild type viruses enables analysis of current relations between existing viral genotypes, it is an invaluable part of virus surveillance and control, facilitating the detection of endemic areas, estimations of vaccine efficacies and predications of possible outbreaks.

Application of the research

This research would provide the basis for molecular characterization and monitoring of a number of paramyxoviruses circulating in the Republic of Croatia. Being an invaluable part of virus surveillance and control, molecular epidemiology studies help in identifying transmission pathways and bottlenecks and enable distinguishing between wild-type and vaccine strains. Besides, genome sequencing and genetic analyses form a basis for investigation of viral biology, variability and adaptability. Recognition of major evolutionary events, their consequences on virus pathogenesis and on our ability to prevent outbreaks and epidemics are directly dependent on the amount of genetic data available for analysis.

Project category

HRZZ research projects

Project budget

990.000,00 HRK

Starting date

01.09.2014.

Finishing date

31.08.2018.

 

TEAM MEMBERS

Name

Surname

Profession/Institution/email

Status on the project

Dubravko

Forčić

Research Adviser

University of Zagreb - CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

dforcic@unizg.hr

Principal Investigator

Maja

Šantak

Senior Research Associate

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

msantak@unizg.hr

 

Researcher

Jelena

Ivančić

Jelečki

Research Associate

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

jivancic@unizg.hr

 

Researcher

Tanja

Košutić Gulija

Research Associate

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

tanja.kosutic.gulija@unizg.hr

 

Researcher

Krešo

Bendelja

Research Associate

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

kbendelja@gmail.com

 

Researcher

Goran

Tešović

Assistant Professor

University Hospital for Infectious Diseases "Dr. Fran Mihaljević"

gtesovic@bfm.hr

 

Researcher

Sunčanica

Ljubin Sternak

Research Associate

„ Dr Andrija Štampar“ Teaching Institute of Public Health and School of Medicine University of Zagreb

sljsternak@stampar.hr

 

Researcher

Maja

Markušić

Assistant

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

mmarkusi@unizg.hr

 

Researcher

Ana

Savić

Assistant

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

asavic@unizg.hr

 

Researcher

Mladen

Jergović

Assistant

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

mjergovic@unizg.hr

 

Researcher

Anamarija

Slović

Research Assistant

University of Zagreb- CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER IN BIOTECHNOLOGY

aslovic@unizg.hr

Researcher

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