Thesis Defense Announcement

To:  The George Mason University Community

Candidate: Angela Schwab
Program: M.S. in Biology
Date:   Friday July 8, 2016
Time:   2:30 pm
Place:  George Mason University
             Science & Technology Campus
              Bull Run Hall, Room 257
Title: "Nanoparticle Capture of Exosomes And siRNA Knockdown of ESCRT"

Thesis Director: Dr. Fatah Kashanchi

Thesis Committee:  Dr. Ramin Hakami, Dr. Yuntao Wu
A copy of the thesis will be available in the Gateway Library.  All are invited to attend the defense.

HIV-1 infection can be treated with antiretroviral drugs, but an efficient system in quantifying latent HIV infection is necessary in a clinical setting. This study shows how nanoparticles can be used to capture exosomes that contain HIV-1 RNA transcripts in patient serum, CVL, and CSF. Multiple viral RNA transcripts of different lengths were found in exosomes from infected cells, including a novel transcript termed “TAR-gag”. Exosomes from HIV-infected cells cause recipient cells to become more susceptible to future infection. This study also shows how siRNA can be used to knock down key proteins involved in the formation of exosomes to decrease the amount of viral RNA transcripts released in these exosomes.