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Out of public health concerns and given the current travel restrictions and lab closures worldwide because of COVID-19, the 27th International Symposium on Hepatitis C Virus and Related Viruses (HCV2020), scheduled to take place July 6 – 9, 2020 in Montreal, Canada has been postponed to July 6 - 9, 2021.

Speakers

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Amit Kapoor

Associate Professor
The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital
USA

Dr. Kapoor is an Associate Professor at The Ohio State University and Principal Investigator in the Center of Vaccine and Immunity at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. Dr. Kapoor completed his PhD from the SG Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences in Lucknow, India. His postdoctoral studies in the University of California San Francisco focused on defining the origin and evolution of HIV drug resistant variants. Dr. Kapoor identified several novel human and animal viruses while working as an Assistant Professor in Columbia University in New York. He also identified the first non-primate homologs of the Hepatitis C virus, including several strains of equine and rodent hepaciviruses. Due to the absence of immune-competent animal models for HCV, animal hepaciviruses in their natural and laboratory hosts offer useful surrogate models to delineate HCV immunopathogenesis and to define the correlates of protective immunity. Currently, Dr Kapoor’s lab is characterizing biological properties of rodent hepaciviruses (RHV) isolated from feral rats. His lab developed the reverse genetic systems for RHV-rn1 to facilitate in vitro and in vivo studies, and his more recent work is focused on adapting the rat hepaciviruses to establish spontaneous persistent infection in fully-immunocompetent laboratory mouse strains. These RHV studies are gaining novel insights into the evolution and adaption of hepaciviruses during cross-species transmission and into the mechanisms of hepacivirus immune evasion. Recently, his lab showed that the spontaneous persistence of RHV is associated with subversion of T cell immunity and a persistent hepacivirus infection can be prevented by pre-infection priming of virus specific T cells using vaccination. Beyond HCV, these new RHV rat and mouse models are unique for studying the mechanisms of immune failure and pathologies associated with the spontaneous persistence of viruses in the liver.

Related publications:
Hartlage AS, Murthy S, Kumar A, Trivedi S, Dravid P, Sharma H, Walker CM, Kapoor A. Vaccination to prevent T cell subversion can protect against persistent hepacivirus infection. Nat Commun. 2019 Mar 7;10(1):1113. doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-09105-0. PubMed PMID: 30846697; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6405742.

Trivedi S, Murthy S, Sharma H, Hartlage AS, Kumar A, Gadi SV, Simmonds P, Chauhan LV, Scheel TKH, Billerbeck E, Burbelo PD, Rice CM, Lipkin WI, Vandegrift K, Cullen JM, Kapoor A. Viral persistence, liver disease, and host response in a hepatitis C-like virus rat model. Hepatology. 2018 Aug;68(2):435-448. doi: 10.1002/hep.29494. Epub 2018 May 21. PubMed PMID: 28859226; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5832584.

Billerbeck E, Wolfisberg R, Fahnøe U, Xiao JW, Quirk C, Luna JM, Cullen JM, Hartlage AS, Chiriboga L, Ghoshal K, Lipkin WI, Bukh J, Scheel TKH, Kapoor A, Rice CM. Mouse models of acute and chronic hepacivirus infection. Science. 2017 Jul 14;357(6347):204-208. doi: 10.1126/science.aal1962. PubMed PMID: 28706073; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5654634.