The research program in Dr. Olivier’s lab has significantly contributed in the understanding of immunopathogenesis of Leishmania. Having published over 160 original papers; we have shown that host PTPs are exploited by Leishmania to shutdown MØ signalling/function, and used PTP inhibitors to re-activate immunity in Leishmania-infected mice. We discovered that Leishmania Zn-metalloprotease GP63 activates MØ PTPs, establishing this parasite protease as a critical virulence factor, and found that per se Leishmania-released GP63-enriched Exo can modulate host MØ. Lastly, we reported a seminal finding that Leishmania Exo are released in sand fly gut and co-egested with Leishmania during transmission. Legacies from my research are 66 undergraduates, 37 grad students and 16 postdoc fellows.
The lab is located in a brand new state-of-the-art facility at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre having 25 different academic/clinical departments, enhancing the impact of our translational research programs. My lab is associated with the Infectious Diseases and Immunology in Global Health program; a global health initiative encompassing 18 wet lab groups lead by 22 fundamental and/or clinician scientists dedicated to translational research. Our training environment consists of open lab design facilitating interactions within and between laboratories. In the wet lab area all standard equipment for cellular/molecular biology and immunology experiments is available together with newly equipped large tissue culture facilities. It is equipped with facilities for molecular pathology, biochemistry, molecular/cellular immunology and pathogens biology. As well as for immunophenotyping, imaging, functional genomics, proteomic/LC-MS/MS, lipidomics, metabolomics, transgenic mouse technology platforms and BSL2/BSL3 animal facilities.