New research group “Computational Virology” at TWINCORE

Group leader Chris Lauber funded by RESIST


Chris Lauber is heading the research group "Computational Virology" at TWINCORE

A new research group was established at TWINCORE in mid-June. Bioinformatician and virologist Chris Lauber has accepted a W1 professorship funded by the <link - external-link-new-window "Opens internal link in current window">cluster of excellence RESIS</link>T and is now starting his group “Computational Virology”. By this, the Institute of Experimental Virology headed by Thomas Pietschmann is strengthened in the area of data sciences.


In a project initiated by Gesine Hansen from the children’s hospital of <link - external-link-new-window "Opens internal link in current window">Hannover Medical School (MHH) </link>and Thomas Pietschmann, Chris Lauber investigates, in tight collaboration with other colleagues from the institute and from MHH,  whether individual genetic variations increase the susceptibility for viral infection or have an influence on the severity of the disease. He is mainly focusing on the human respiratory syncytial virus (hRSV). This pathogen causes infections of the respiratory tract in infants, which can take a serious course in some of the patients. Lauber studies whether genetic factors play a role in this. If such factors would be known, they could be used for prognostic purposes.

Furthermore, Chris Lauber is working on the human virome, the entirety of all viruses associated with an individual. He is screening large amounts of high-throughput sequencing data for known but also yet unknown viruses to determine if these are related with diseases of unknown cause or disease progression.

The research group is funded by the cluster of excellence RESIST for three years. Funding can be extended for two more years after a positive intermediate evaluation.