Fellowship registration number: UMO-2018/30/E/NZ1/00874
Major reason that a cure for HIV continues to elude us is that the virus hides away in cells, forming a persistent reservoir in which the virus is dormant (i.e. latent), and in such cells the virus is not visible to the immune system and to antiretroviral therapy. Consequently, latency persists, cannot be eliminated and represent a major hurdle to finding a cure. Latency is a very complex phenomenon and results from multiple molecular mechanisms that block HIV gene expression. Most of the characterized molecular mechanisms of HIV latency suppress the HIV transcription (transcriptional latency), however virus can also be inhibited at the steps following HIV transcription (posttranscriptional latency). Our research is focusing on understanding the molecular mechanisms that leads to HIV latency with the special emphasis on less-characterised posttranscriptional HIV latency. Recent findings clearly show that current strategies (i.e. „shock-and-kill”) are not efficient to eliminate the latent reservoir. Consequently, targeting both transcriptional and posttranscriptional blocks may positively impact the development of more efficient “shock-and-kill” strategies.
HIV transcription and posttranscriptional processes.
Molecular mechnisms leading to HIV latency/reactivation from latency.
Implications for therapeutic approaches.
Education & Experience2009: PhD dissertation, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology
Italy) affiliated with Open University (United Kindgom).
Present: Assistant Professor at Malopolska Center of Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University, Krakow. Poland. SONATA BIS fellow from the National Science Centre.
2017-2019: POLONEZ fellowship from the National Science Centre co-funded from the EU H2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, Malopolska Centre of Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland.
2013-2016: Post-doctoral fellow at the Universitè Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), the Institute of Molecular Biology and Medicine (IBMM), Gosselies, Belgium.
2009-2012: Post-doctoral fellow at the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), Trieste, Italy.
2005-2009: PhD studies at the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), Trieste, Italy.
2000-2005: MSc studies at the Faculty of Biology, University of Gdansk, Gdansk, Poland.
2004: Internship at the Biosearch Technologies Chemistry for Genomics, Novato, California, USA.
GrantsPresent: SONATA BIS 8 program from the National Science Centre (PI: Anna Kula-Pacurar)
2017-2019: POLONEZ-1 program from the National Science Centre co-funded from the EU H2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (PI: Anna Kula-Pacurar).
2014-2016: Les Amis des Instituts Pasteur à Bruxelles.
2009-2011: Central European Initiative Research Fellowship Programme (CERES). SP3 People Marie Składowska-Curie Actions.
Currently 2 PhD positions are available within the Sonata Bis program.
Moreover, we are always seeking for interested and highly motivated Master students.
Please contact us for further details (firstname.lastname@example.org).
• Ait-Ammar A*, Kula A*, Darcis G, Verdikt R, De Wit S, Gautier V, Mallon PWG, Marcello A, Rohr O, Van Lint C. Current Status of Latency Reversing Agents Facing the Heterogeneity of HIV-1 Cellular and Tissue Reservoirs. Front Microbiol. 2020 Jan 24;10:3060. Review.
• Kula A, Delacourt N, Bouchat S, Darcis G, Avettand-Fenoel V, Verdikt R, Corazza F, Necsoi C, Vanhulle C, Bendoumou M, Burny A, De Wit S, Rouzioux C, Rohr O and Van Lint O. Heterogeneous HIV-1 reactivation patterns of disulfiram and combined disulfiram+romidepsin treatments. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2019 Apr 15;80(5):605-613