We want to know what happens when a virus infects our body. How exactly does the virus invade a host cell and how exactly do our cells respond? By studying this interaction between viruses and their host at a molecular level, we expect to develop new ways to interfere in the infection processes, prevent infection by developing vaccines, diagnose and cure infections. To achieve these goals we work with a consortium representing the top research institutes in The Netherlands. We cooperate by combining our sample collections, sharing data analysis facilities, collective data management, and using statistical techniques. Through involvement of several commercial partners VIRGO creates the potential to quickly transform insights into intervention strategies, such as antiviral drugs or vaccines. The VIRGO Consortium is financially supported by the Netherlands Genomics Initiative (NGI) and the Dutch Ministry of Health (VWS).
Our work centers around four major viral diseases and pioneering research on the suspected viral origin of schizophrenia:
- Acute respiratory viral infections such as influenza, human metapneumovirus (hMPV), respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)
- Acute enteric viral infections such as norovirus, rotavirus, calicivirus, astrovirus
- Chronic hepatitis B and C infections
- HIV infections