Cliffe Lab

Investigating the molecular mechanisms of Herpes Simplex Virus latency and reactivation, and neuronal specific immune responses.​

Type I IFN dependent restriction of HSV latency

Latent HSV genomes have memory

Read our latest work from MSTP student Jon Suzich on how type I IFN upon de novo infection results in a more restricted form of HSV latency. We also link this restriction to association of viral genomes with PML nuclear bodies.

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HSV reactivation in response to neuronal hyperexcitability and IL-1

Neuronal hyperexcitability is a DLK-dependent trigger of HSV-1 reactivation that can be induced by IL-1

The latest study from our lab published in eLife describes how HSV-1 reactivation can be induced by conditions that induce neuronal hyperexcitability including exposure IL-1. This study may help explain why HSV undergoes reactivation during fever, psychological stress and following sunburn.

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HSV Phase I and phase II of reactivation

Neuronal Stress Pathway Mediates a Switch

A neuronal pathway involving activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), common to many stress responses, is essential for initial HSV gene expression during reactivation. JNK-dependent reactivation results in a specific change to the HSV epigenome known as a histone methyl/phospho switch, which can permit gene expression to occur from repressive heterochromatin. This study therefore answer a long-standing question as to how viral gene expression can initiate to trigger HSV reactivation.

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News All News »

July 2023

Anna gave a talk at the International DEEP-DV Summer School 2023 in Hamburg and got to hear about some really amazing science being performed as part of the DEEP-DV consortium…

July 2023

Sara Dochnal gave a spotlight talk at her first in-person International Herpesvirus Workshop in Missoula, Montana. Plus she was awarded a Merit Award. The lab is super proud of all…

May 2023

The first PhD graduation for the Cliffe lab. Congratulations to Dr. Sean Cuddy!!!!

May 2023

Congratulations to Patryk Krakowiak on passing his PhD qualifying exam!  

April 2023

Congratulations to Sean Cuddy on very successfully defending his thesis on "Innate Immune Activation in Support of Herpes Simplex Virus-1 Reactivation from Latency"