Dr Virginia Howick

  • LKAS Research Fellow (Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health & Comparative Medicine)

Biography

Academic history

March 2020-Present: Sir Henry Dale/Lord Kelvin Adam Smith Research Fellow
2016-2020: Postdoctoral Fellow, Wellcome Sanger Institute
2010-2015: PhD Student in Entomology, Cornell University
2009-2010: Junior Scientist, Heimpel Lab, University of Minnesota
2005-2009: BSc in Microbiology and Genetics, University of Minnesota

Research interests

The malaria parasite has a complex life cycle in which it must transit through multiple environments in a vertebrate host and mosquito vector. Transmission begins with ingestion of an infectious blood meal by one of 70 mosquito species capable of transmitting the disease. This initiates the most extreme population bottleneck in the life cycle in which the parasite must rapidly undergo fertilisation, develop into an invasive form and transit through the mosquito midgut epithelium. The overarching goal of my research is to understand how variation in parasite populations and vector species influence the outcome of this process. Understanding how vector communities shape parasite populations and how this varies in time and space has the potential to guide interventions and control programs by allowing for strategies to be locally tailored based on parasite genomic-surveillance and entomological surveys.

As a postdoc at the Sanger Institute, I led the work to build the Malaria Cell Atlas, which is a comprehensive reference of single-cell transcriptomes across the parasite life cycle. Using the methods developed in this work and the data as a reference, I'm now working specifically to understand how parasite population alter gene expression in the mosquito vector to successfully transmit, and how this is dependent on parasite genetic variants and mosquito vector species.

 

Publications

List by: Type | Date

Jump to: 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2014
Number of items: 6.

2020

Talman, A. M. et al. (2020) Uptake of plasmodium falciparum gametocytes during mosquito bloodmeal by direct and membrane feeding. Frontiers in Microbiology, 11, 246. (doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2020.00246) (PMID:32194521) (PMCID:PMC7062676)

2019

Howick, V. M. et al. (2019) The Malaria Cell Atlas: single parasite transcriptomes across the complete Plasmodium life cycle. Science, 365(6455), eaaw2619. (doi: 10.1126/science.aaw2619) (PMID:31439762) (PMCID:PMC7056351)

2018

Behrman, E. L., Howick, V. M. , Kapun, M., Staubach, F., Bergland, A. O., Petrov, D. A., Lazzaro, B. P. and Schmidt, P. S. (2018) Rapid seasonal evolution in innate immunity of wild Drosophila melanogaster. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences, 285(1870), 20172599. (doi: 10.1098/rspb.2017.2599) (PMID:29321302) (PMCID:PMC5784205)

2017

Howick, V. M. and Lazzaro, B. P. (2017) The genetic architecture of defence as resistance to and tolerance of bacterial infection in Drosophila melanogaster. Molecular Ecology, 26(6), pp. 1533-1546. (doi: 10.1111/mec.14017) (PMID:28099780)

2016

Unckless, R. L., Howick, V. M. and Lazzaro, B. P. (2016) Convergent balancing selection on an antimicrobial peptide in Drosophila. Current Biology, 26(2), pp. 257-262. (doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.11.063) (PMID:26776733) (PMCID:PMC4729654)

2014

Howick, V. and Lazzaro, B. P. (2014) Genotype and diet shape resistance and tolerance across distinct phases of bacterial infection. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 14(1), 56. (doi: 10.1186/1471-2148-14-56) (PMID:24655914) (PMCID:PMC3997931)

This list was generated on Mon Nov 23 05:35:58 2020 GMT.
Jump to: Articles
Number of items: 6.

Articles

Talman, A. M. et al. (2020) Uptake of plasmodium falciparum gametocytes during mosquito bloodmeal by direct and membrane feeding. Frontiers in Microbiology, 11, 246. (doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2020.00246) (PMID:32194521) (PMCID:PMC7062676)

Howick, V. M. et al. (2019) The Malaria Cell Atlas: single parasite transcriptomes across the complete Plasmodium life cycle. Science, 365(6455), eaaw2619. (doi: 10.1126/science.aaw2619) (PMID:31439762) (PMCID:PMC7056351)

Behrman, E. L., Howick, V. M. , Kapun, M., Staubach, F., Bergland, A. O., Petrov, D. A., Lazzaro, B. P. and Schmidt, P. S. (2018) Rapid seasonal evolution in innate immunity of wild Drosophila melanogaster. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences, 285(1870), 20172599. (doi: 10.1098/rspb.2017.2599) (PMID:29321302) (PMCID:PMC5784205)

Howick, V. M. and Lazzaro, B. P. (2017) The genetic architecture of defence as resistance to and tolerance of bacterial infection in Drosophila melanogaster. Molecular Ecology, 26(6), pp. 1533-1546. (doi: 10.1111/mec.14017) (PMID:28099780)

Unckless, R. L., Howick, V. M. and Lazzaro, B. P. (2016) Convergent balancing selection on an antimicrobial peptide in Drosophila. Current Biology, 26(2), pp. 257-262. (doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.11.063) (PMID:26776733) (PMCID:PMC4729654)

Howick, V. and Lazzaro, B. P. (2014) Genotype and diet shape resistance and tolerance across distinct phases of bacterial infection. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 14(1), 56. (doi: 10.1186/1471-2148-14-56) (PMID:24655914) (PMCID:PMC3997931)

This list was generated on Mon Nov 23 05:35:58 2020 GMT.

Grants

Grants and Awards listed are those received whilst working with the University of Glasgow.

  • Identification of genomic components that predict transmission of the malaria parasite in different vector species
    Wellcome Trust
    2020 - 2025