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Xi Yen is investigating how human immune cells respond to malaria infection, with a particular emphasis on dendritic cells. She has a particular interest in understanding the mechanisms by which pathogens, including the malaria parasite, evade or compromise host immunity.
She is also interested in investigating how immune memory against malaria is generated and how this may inform vaccine design.
Xi Yen’s honours year was carried out under the supervision of Dr Freya Fowkes and Professor John Reeder at Burnet Institute with the co-supervision of Dr Alyssa Barry at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute. This used a populations genetic approach to investigate the genetic diversity of a vaccine candidate against P. vivax, the Duffy Binding Protein.