BBSRC grant for malaria research awarded to Dr Catherine Merrick.

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Posted on 31 October 2012
Dr Merrick's research focuses on the human malaria parasite with the goal of improving our understanding of the parasite’s basic biology and the impact of this biology on virulence.

Dr Catherine Merrick, a new Lecturer in Biology at Keele, has won a grant from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) for research on the human malaria parasite.

The award will support a study of the unusual structure of telomeres - the ends of chromosomes - in the malaria parasite.  Dr Merrick is interested in telomeres because many of the parasite's virulence genes lie at these sites.  These genes help to maintain chronic malaria infections and contribute to severe disease.  A better understanding of the parasite's telomeres may also help scientists to identify new drug targets in this important human pathogen.

This is the second Research Council award to Dr Merrick, who joined the Keele faculty in September 2011 and won a New Investigator grant from the Medical Research Council (MRC) in June 2012.  She is a member of the Keele Centre for Applied Entomology and Parasitology (CAEP).  Postdoctoral scientists interested in working on this project should contact her for further details.


Malaria parasites in human red blood cells.