My laboratory quite literally focuses on the movement of HIV within and between cells of the human immune system. We track HIV particles by first incorporating a green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusion into the viral core, enabling direct visualization of the viral behavior in living cells using high-resolution video microscopy. This approach has proven useful in characterizing events leading to the nuclear entry of HIV particles during a typical infection, and it has provided key insights into the unique trafficking of HIV in dendritic cells, which can efficiently bind and transmit the virus without themselves becoming infected. Current projects in my lab aim to define the mechanisms of HIV trafficking within dendritic cells with the long-term goal of understanding the complex interactions between pathogens and the cells they infect. Future projects will encompass a broader range of viral and bacterial pathogens and their trafficking patterns in the cells and tissues of the human immune system.
McDonald D. Dendritic Cells and HIV-1 Trans-Infection. Viruses. 2010;2(8):1704-17. Doi 10.3390/V2081704. [PubMed]
Reuter MA, Pecora ND, Harding CV, Canaday DH, McDonald D. Mycobacterium tuberculosis promotes HIV trans-infection and suppresses major histocompatibility complex class II antigen processing by dendritic cells. J Virol. 2010; 84(17):8549-60. PMCID: 2919047. [PubMed]
Yu HJ, Reuter MA, McDonald D. HIV traffics through a specialized, surface-accessible intracellular compartment during trans-infection of T cells by mature dendritic cells. PLoS Pathog. 2008; 4(8):e1000134. PMCID: 2515344. [PubMed]
Jones L, McDonald D, Canaday DH. Rapid MHC-II antigen presentation of HIV type 1 by human dendritic cells. AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2007; 23(6):812-6. PMID: 17604545. [PubMed]