The Pekosz Lab is a dynamic and collaborative group studying respiratory viruses through a variety of perspectives at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
As part of the CEIRR network, we conduct seasonal Influenza and SARS surveillance in Baltimore, Taiwan, and Macha (Zambia). As part of our surveillance work, we characterize and sequence variant viruses as they arise in populations.
We conduct research on the viral and host factors that contribute to temperature-dependent SARS-CoV-2 and Influenza replication using human nasal epithelial cell culture model systems (hNEC), which provide a more accurate analogue to infection of the upper respiratory system than traditional cell culture. Our research on viral and host factors includes investigations of mitochondrial dynamics, single-cell transcriptional responses, and IgG and IgM production in hNECs.
We evaluate live attenuated influenza vaccines (LAIVs) and come up with strategies for improvement. and perform serology work focused on convalescent plasma and immune evasion.
Additionally, we investigate temperature-dependent strain variability in enterovirus D68.
Images (clockwise from left): 1. Lab photo taken July 2021 2. VeroE6 TMPRSS2 cells infected with SARS-CoV-2 (source: Dr. Eddy Anaya). Green is spike blue is nucleus 3. Filamentous influenza budding from a cell (source: Dr. Andrew Pekosz).