William J. Britt, MD

BrittProfessor of Pediatrics, Microbiology & Neurobiology



Address: Children's Harbor Bldg, room 107
UAB
Birmingham, AL 35294
Telephone: (205) 996-7762
FAX: (205) 975-6549
Email: wbritt@uab.edu

 

Publications

 

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Education


B.S., University of Arizona College of Medicine, Phoenix, AZ
Internship (Pediatrics), McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Residency (Pediatrics), University of Minnesota
Post-doctoral Fellowship, NIH, NIAID, LPV
Fellowship (Infectious Diseases), UAB, Birmingham, AL


Research Interests


Our laboratory has focused its efforts on two important aspects of the biology of herpesviruses; virus assembly and the pathogenesis of human cytomegalovirus (CMV) infections. We have developed several in-vitro assay systems that permit the identification and characterization of critical protein interactions that take place during virus assembly. Using BAC derived infectious clones, we have utilized virus genetics to understand the role of different viral proteins in the assembly of an infectious particle. Our results indicate that interactions between viral tegument and envelope proteins are essential for infectious particle assembly and that inhibition of these interactions can limit envelopment and therefore, virus assembly. A second major focus of our laboratory is the development of a small animal model of CNS disease associated with cytomegalovirus infections. We have exploited a finding that newborn mice infected with murine CMV develop CNS infection that leads to maldevelopment of the CNS, including abnormalities in cellular migration. This system is now being characterized both in terms of host responses and viral genes that are required for this disease phenotype.