Bacterial biofilms – Do neutrophils generate extracellular traps to combat bacterial biofilms?

University of Glasgow

Past award

Student: Kathryn Pennel : University of Glasgow

Year Award Started: 2014

In response to infection specific immune cells called neutrophils are known to kill bacteria in a number of ways. One of these killing mechanisms is through production of structures called Neutrophil Extracellular Traps or ‘NETS’. This type of killing helps clear bacterial infections but molecules associated with these NETS play a role in immune system malfunction which causes damage to self as well as bacteria. A particular enzyme essential for NET formation, called PADIV, is associated with rheumatoid arthritis which is a common and devastating disease in which the immune system attacks the joints. The aim of this project is to investigate how NETS impact on different types of bacteria. This should result in a better understanding of how the immune system deals with bacterial infections and the role of infections in autoimmunity.

Research area: Infections, inflammation or immunology


Dr Shauna Culshaw
Institute of Infection, Inflammation and Immunity