- Pathogenesis of neurolisteriosis
- Neuropathology of neuroinfectious diseases and other neurological disorders in animals
- Cell culture models
- Molecular bacteriology
The neurolisteriosis research group is part of the Neuropathology unit. The main interest of the neurolisteriosis group is to investigate the neuropathogenesis of the encephalitic form of listeriosis (neurolisteriosis) in ruminants, which is a frequently fatal complication of Listeria monocytogenes infection. In ruminants, neurolisteriosis occurs as rhombencephalitis, which specifically targets the brainstem and is associated with cranial nerve palsies and brainstem dysfunction. Although this form is associated with a high mortality in both humans and animals, little is known about its pathogenesis. Our aims are to investigate the neuropathogenesis of rhombencephalitis in ruminants, notably molecular mechanisms of brain invasion and intracerebral spread, and to identify involved pathogen and host factors, notably Listeria monocytogenes genotypes associated with neurovirulence and putative neurovirulence genes. Furthermore, we provide neuropathological expertise for studies of neurological disorders in animals.