I am an MRC Clinical Research Training Fellow at UCL and registrar in Infectious Diseases/General Medicine in London. I started my PhD in the group in October 2013 following a 2-year clinical research post in Tuberculosis at Northwick Park Hospital. I am co-supervised by Dr Mahdad Noursadeghi at UCL, and Dr Adrian Martineau at Queen Mary University of London. My PhD is focusing on the effect of vitamin D on the human immune response to tuberculosis.
Vitamin D deficiency is associated with increased risk of active TB and studies show that vitamin D supplementation may be beneficial in the treatment of TB. Vitamin D can enhance intracellular killing of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) and promote T cell regulation. Therefore, vitamin D has the potential to enhance Mtb clearance and provide homeostatic regulation of immune responses in active TB, through its different effects on innate and adaptive immune responses.
Much of my work so far has been centred around genome-wide transcriptional profiling of whole blood samples from patients in a clinical trial of vitamin D supplementation in pulmonary TB. I will be extending the application of this technique to biopsies at the site of tuberculin skin tests as well as evaluating the effect of vitamin D in an in vitro model of T cell dependent control of TB in macrophages.