Education Working Party

2020 ESID Medium-Term Fellowship April report

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By Yasemin Kendir Demirkol

Dear ESID Board Members,

I'm writing to report my completion of the ESID fellowship at the St. Giles Laboratory of Human Genetics of Infectious Diseases, Rockefeller University, led by Prof. Jean-Laurent Casanova.
During the past 6 months, I contributed to the project to investigate a new inborn error of type I interferon immunity in patients with life-threatening COVID-19 pneumonia. I studied a candidate gene, known as a classical interferon stimulated gene (ISG) since 1990, to dissect its cellular functions in antiviral responses triggered by type I interferon signaling, especially to SARS-CoV-2 infections. I also improved my knowledges and skills in human genetics studies, especially in searching for novel genetic defects in patients with severe viral infections, including COVID-19 and influenza pneumonia. I focused my search in patients recruited from my homeland, Turkey, taking into the consideration of its unique genetic background and high consanguinity rates. My training in the Casanova lab has now prepared me for future career in the human genetic studies of inborn errors of immunity.

The full report is available here