Skip to main content

Doctoral Student receives Watkins and NIH Fellowships

February 22, 2008

Ariel Jones, a doctoral student in School of Life Sciences was awarded a predoctoral fellowship from National Institutes of Health (NIAID) to study the “Role of coronavirus membrane protein carboxy tail in virus.”

She was also selected to receive an American Society for Microbiology (ASM) Watkins Fellowship. Jones works with Brenda Hogue, associate professor and researcher in the Center for Infectious Disease and Vaccinology at the Biodesign Institute at ASU. Coronaviruses are a medically significant group of RNA viruses that cause respiratory and enteric infections in humans and many animals.

The overall focus of the proposal is to understand the mechanism and function of coronavirus proteins in virus assembly. One of the viral proteins, the membrane (M) protein plays a key role in viral assembly.

The proposal aims to determine the role of charged residues and a short conserved domain within the M protein carboxy tail. To achieve this goal, a panel of mutant viruses will be generated with various changes in charged residues and the conserved domain within the M tail. The mutants will be studied in the context of the full-length mouse hepatitis virus A59, our model virus, and infectious clone.

The proposed study will provide information which is applicable to identifying potential antiviral targets.