Project 10

From whole-body imaging to whole-body modeling of viral infection in zebrafish

Supervisor: Dr. Jean-Pierre Levraud, co-supervisors: local: Dr. Emma Colucci, external: Prof. R. Doursat (P8)


  • In vivo study of early host cell response; parameters of alternative fates of interferon expression
  • Understand viral dissemination by establishing the « genealogical tree » of successive infected cells at the wholebody level. For both, the ESR will use the neuroinvasive Sindbis virus infection model in zebrafish developed by P7.

Expected Results:

  • New Sindbis virus strain to report early infection, and new interferon response reporter transgenics
  • Early response of cells to viral infection imaged in vivo.
  • Library of viruses with many distinguishable colours (rainbow)
  • Whole-body images of zebrafish larvae infected with the multicolour virus mix followed over several days
  • Specific image analysis method to derive a dynamic statistical map of virus spread.
  • Model of virus spreading tactics.


  • Academic: P1, UM, G. Lutfalla, Design and injection of improved reporter transgenes; P5 STUBA K. Mikula; Generate the analysis software to track the viral spread through the organism
  • Industrial: P14 (Union Biometrica) Dr D Strack, Testing flow whole-body multicolour imaging

Links to other projects: Collaborations with ESR1 for transgenic reporter lines; ESRs2&9 for imaging instrumentation; ESR7 to adopt dedicated image analysis software; ESR11 for modelling.