Ayman El-Guindy, PhD

Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Infectious Disease)

Research Departments & Organizations

Pediatrics: Pediatric Infectious Diseases

CPIRT - Pulmonary Infection Research and Treatment

Discovery to Cure Internship

Virology Laboratories

Yale Cancer Center: Virus and Other Infection-associated Cancers

Office of Cooperative Research

Research Interests

DNA Replication; Epstein-Barr Virus Infections; Infectious Disease Medicine; Oncogenic Viruses; Pediatrics; Phosphorylation; Transcription Factors; Tumor Virus Infections

Research Summary

Our research focuses on the process of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) lytic DNA replication. Epstein-Barr virus, an oncogenic virus, is associated with lymphomas and carcinomas, such as Burkitt lymphoma and nasopharyngeal carcinoma. The EBV life cycle is divided into two phases, latent and lytic. EBV is predominantly latent. The only route for the virus to amplify and infect new individuals is through activation of its lytic gene expression program. ZEBRA, a viral transcription activator, mediates the switch from the latent to the lytic phase. ZEBRA is also essential for the process of viral DNA replication; it binds to the origin of lytic replication and recruits other components of the replication machinery. In our studies we found that phosphorylation of the EBV ZEBRA protein regulates its capacity to interact with the origin of replication. These studies led us to characterize a novel role for replication proteins in the process of origin recognition. In addition, we have developed various genetic approaches to assess the involvement of other lytic cycleproteins in the process of viral DNA replication. For example, we have recently found that the EBV Rta protein, which serves as a transcription factor, plays an independent role in replicating the endogenous viral genome. Our goal is to delineate the viral and cellular proteins involved in the process of lytic DNA replication and their role in replication. Identifying the major players responsible for viral DNA replication has a strong potential to generate new strategies for the development of antiviral drugs against EBV.

Specialized Terms: DNA replication; Tumor virus; Herpesvirus; Oncogenic; Transcription factor; Replication protein; Phosphorylation; Protein modification; Kinase

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Contact Info

Ayman El-Guindy, PhD
Lab Location
412 LSOGLaboratory for Surgery, Obsterics & Gynecology
375 Congress Avenue, Ste 4th

New Haven, CT 06519
Office Location
416 LSOGLaboratory for Surgery, Obsterics & Gynecology
375 Congress Avenue, Ste 4th

New Haven, CT 06519
Mailing Address
Pediatric Infectious DiseasesPO Box 208024
333 Cedar Street

New Haven, CT 06520-8024