about icvs | People | CRISTINACUNHA


Name: Cristina Amorim Cunha

Office: I3.02

School Phone: +351 253 060 4834

Email: cristinacunha@med.uminho.pt




Keywords: Aspergillosis Innate Immunity Inflammasomes Immunogenetics Genetic susceptibility to infection


Invasive aspergillosis (IA) is a life-threatening infection caused mainly by the fungus Aspergillus fumigatus (Af) and that typically affects severely immunocompromised patients, such as recipients of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Defects ininnate immunity receptors and signaling components have been pointed out as key pathogenetic mechanisms for susceptibility to IA. Inflammasomes are key signaling platforms that detect pathogenic microorganisms and sterile stressors that activate the highly proinflammatory cytokines IL-1ß and IL-18. However, the importance of the inflammasomes in the immune response to Af is only barely studied. I am interested in elucidating the mechanisms underlying the activation and regulation of inflammasomes by Af, as well as their contribution to innate and adaptive antifungal immunity, in both pre-clinical models of infection and human patients. Furthermore I expect to provide new perspectives in the prevention and management of IA, besides adding to the multidisciplinary understanding of its pathogenesis.

Selected Publications

Arts RJ, Novakovic B, ter Horst R, Carvalho A, Bekkering S, Lachmandas E, Rodrigues F, Silvestre R, Cheng SC, Wang SY, Habibi E, Gonçalves LG, Mesquita I, Cunha C, van Laarhoven A, van de Veerdonk FL, Williams DL, van der Meer JW, Logie C, O'Neill LA, Dinarello CA, Riksen NP, van Crevel R, Clish C, Notebaart RA, Joosten LA, Stunnenberg HG, Xavier RJ, Netea MG. “Glutaminolysis and fumarate accumulation integrate immunometabolic and epigenetic programs in trained immunity”. Cell Metab. 24(6):807-19 (2016).

Chorny A, Casas-Recasens S, Sintes J, Shan M, Polentarutti N, García-Escudero R, Walland AC, Yeiser JR, Cassis L, Carrillo J, Puga I, Cunha C, Bastos H, Rodrigues F, Lacerda JF, Morais A, Dieguez-Gonzalez R, Heeger PS, Salvatori G, Carvalho A, Garcia-Sastre A, Blander JM, Mantovani A, Garlanda C, Cerutti A. “The soluble pattern recognition receptor PTX3 links humoral innate and adaptive immune responses by helping marginal zone B cells”. J Exp Med. 213(10):2167-85 (2016).

Cunha C, Monteiro AA, Oliveira-Coelho A, Kühne J, Rodrigues F, Sasaki SD, Schio SM, Camargo JJ, Mantovani A, Carvalho A, Pasqualotto AC. "PTX3-based genetic testing for risk of aspergillosis after lung transplant". Clin Infect Dis. 2015 Dec 15;61(12):1893-4.

Capela C, Dossou AD, Silva-Gomes R, Sopoh GE, Makoutode M, Menino JF, Fraga AG, Cunha C, Carvalho A, Rodrigues F, Pedrosa J. “Genetic variation in autophagy-related genes influences the risk and phenotype of Buruli ulcer”. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2016 Apr 29;10(4):e0004671.

Gonçalves SM, Lagrou K, Rodrigues CS, Campos CF, Bernal-Martínez L, Rodrigues F, Silvestre R, Alcazar-Fuoli L, Maertens JA, Cunha C, Carvalho A. “Evaluation of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid cytokines as biomarkers for invasive pulmonary aspergillosis in at-risk patients”. Front Microbiol. 8:2362 (2017).

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