Antibodies against Emerging Infectious Diseases, a QBI/GIVI Online Seminar with Erica Ollmann Saphire

Monday, May 1, 2023 - 11:00 am to 12:00 pm
Event sponsor
Quantitative Biosciences Institute (QBI) & Gladstone Institutes Virology Institute (GIVI)
students, staff, faculty, alumni, local science community

The QBI & Gladstone Institute Infectious Disease and Human Health Seminar Series presents Erica Ollmann Saphire, PhD, president, CEO, and professor at the La Jolla Institute for Immunology. In her executive role, she is leading faculty in collaborative strategy, uncovering sex-based differences in the immune system and innovating vaccines. In her academic lab, Dr. Saphire is a structural biologist, virologist and immunologist. She galvanized and led NIH- and BMGF-funded global consortia uniting 40 to 60 competing investigators to compare competing antibody therapeutics, learn which features forecast protection, and mitigate viral escape.

Dr. Saphire’s research led to the first structure of the entire human IgG antibody, the supramolecular complex by which IgG activates the complement cascade for immune protection. This pioneered structures of the surface glycoproteins of Lassa, Ebola, Marburg, rabies, and other viruses, as well as the understanding of how the viruses mediate entry and how human antibodies may defend against them. Her research has also further revealed how viral matrix proteins hijack host lipids to polymerize conformational change and virus assembly, and it has proved that certain viral proteins rearrange into different structures at different times for different functions. Dr. Saphire’s work has been recognized at the White House with a PECASE, with young investigator awards from ICAR, ASM, ASBMB, and the MRC Centre for Virus Research. She has been recognized with awards from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund; a Fulbright for research in the United Kingdom, South Africa, and Germany; and a Mercator Fellowship from Deutsche Forsch­ungs­ge­mein­schaft. In 2021, she was named Scientist of the Year by the ARCS Foundation San Diego.

Talk Title: Antibodies against Emerging Infectious Diseases

Host: Taha Taha