Choukri Ben Mamoun, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine (Infectious Diseases) and of Microbial Pathogenesis

Research Interests

Malaria; Plasmodium falciparum; Babesia microti; Infectious Disease Medicine

Research Organizations

Internal Medicine: Infectious Diseases | Liver Center

Microbial Pathogenesis

Office of Cooperative Research

Research Summary

Basic Research
Our laboratory studies the pathogenesis of human malaria and babesiosis. The primary objectives of our research program are to identify new targets for development of potent and selective new therapies to treat these diseases and to develop a new diagnostic test for early detection of Babesia infection to prevent transfusion transmitted babesiosis. Our laboratory has discovered new pathways that play a critical function in Plasmodium falciparum and Babesia microti development and differentiation. We use a combination of biochemical, structural and pharmacological analyses to identify specific inhibitors with potent activity against these parasites. One available project in the lab focuses the characterization of transporters and enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of co-enzyme A and understanding the metabolic, biochemical and structural bases of inhibition of this pathway by a highly potent class of inhibitors. Other available projects include the development of a humanized mouse model for falciparum and vivax malaria, and development of new tools for genetic manipulation of B. microti.

Therapy Program
Our therapy program builds upon the findings of our basic research program. There are two main topics investigated in this program: vaccine development and drug discovery.
Vaccine Development: Create transgenic parasites that can be used as attenuated vaccines.
Drug development: Screen chemical libraries and design new compounds that target specific enzymes of the parasites.

Selected Publications

Full List of PubMed Publications

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