Prof. Antonio Barragan MD, PhD Professor Dept. of Molecular Biosciences (MBW) The Wenner-Gren Institute Stockholm University Stockholm | Sweden
Antonio Barragan is professor in Molecular Infection Biology at Stockholm University. His current research on the pathobiology of parasitic infections integrates molecular parasitology with immunology and cell biology to understand how obligate intracellular parasites interact with host cells. The model system utilized is the intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which is an important opportunistic pathogen in humans and animals, and a model for understanding the biology of intracellular parasitism. The research aims to define the molecular mechanisms utilized by Toxoplasma, and related apicomplexan parasites, to manipulate the host´s immune system to their own advantage and thereby promote colonization and transmission of infection. Recent studies by the team have described a conserved GABAergic signaling system in leukocytes, which Toxoplasma co-opts in parasitized leukocytes to promote dissemination.