This renewal application requests continued support for 6 predoctoral student training slots at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in virology, viral pathogenesis, viral vaccine development and gene therapy vectors, with a special emphasis on human pathogens. Objectives: The objectives of the virology training program are to provide laboratory-based training in virology coupled with the development of critical thinking and communication skills. In many cases training will include the use of biocontainment facilities. Rationale: Viruses will continue to be significant contributors to the global burden of disease far into the future. Thus there is a continuing need for expertise in the fundamental aspects of viral replication and pathogenesis. In addition, viruses represent important tools in vaccine development and gene therapy vectors. Design: We have created a three-semester series of courses for students training in virology, covering basic/molecular virology, viral pathogenesis, and special topics in virology. Students are challenged with this and other coursework, interpretation of the published literature, rigorous laboratory training, writing, and public presentation of their work in a variety of settings. Students also receive training in research ethics, and attend numerous seminars, symposia, and national meetings. Research Areas/Scientific Disciplines: The main focus is in viral pathogenesis, explored in cell culture, in organ culture, in animal models, and in clinical samples. Training experiences range from evolutionary biology, SARS CoV, HIV, alphaviruses, flaviviruses, herpesviruses, and more. Trainee Profile: Graduate students are recruited nationally from competitive universities and colleges. Students are supported with institutional funds in the first year, and will be supported by the training grant for 1 year at any point during years 2-4. In recognition of the importance of the Virology Training Program to the mission of the university an additional slot will be provided from institutional funds. Relevance: The goal of the training program is to train new generations of virologists in pathogenic mechanisms, important human pathogens, and the use of engineered viruses in vaccines and gene therapy development. These trainees will contribute to our capacity to deal with epidemic viruses, endemic viruses, or emerging viruses, to use viruses as tools, and to deal with viruses in the context of biodefense.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Microbiology and Infectious Diseases B Subcommittee (MID)
Program Officer
Mcsweegan, Edward
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
Schools of Medicine
Chapel Hill
United States
Zip Code
Ziehr, Ben; Lenarcic, Erik; Cecil, Chad et al. (2016) The eIF4AIII RNA helicase is a critical determinant of human cytomegalovirus replication. Virology 489:194-201
Chappell, William H; Gautam, Dipendra; Ok, Suzan T et al. (2016) Homologous Recombination Repair Factors Rad51 and BRCA1 Are Necessary for Productive Replication of Human Papillomavirus 31. J Virol 90:2639-52
Vincent, Heather A; Ziehr, Benjamin; Moorman, Nathaniel J (2016) Human Cytomegalovirus Strategies to Maintain and Promote mRNA Translation. Viruses 8:97
Arend, Kyle C; Ziehr, Benjamin; Vincent, Heather A et al. (2016) Multiple Transcripts Encode Full-Length Human Cytomegalovirus IE1 and IE2 Proteins during Lytic Infection. J Virol 90:8855-65
Honeycutt, Jenna B; Wahl, Angela; Baker, Caroline et al. (2016) Macrophages sustain HIV replication in vivo independently of T cells. J Clin Invest 126:1353-66
Ziehr, Benjamin; Vincent, Heather A; Moorman, Nathaniel J (2016) Human Cytomegalovirus pTRS1 and pIRS1 Antagonize Protein Kinase R To Facilitate Virus Replication. J Virol 90:3839-48
Peppenelli, Megan A; Arend, Kyle C; Cojohari, Olesea et al. (2016) Human Cytomegalovirus Stimulates the Synthesis of Select Akt-Dependent Antiapoptotic Proteins during Viral Entry To Promote Survival of Infected Monocytes. J Virol 90:3138-47
Ziehr, Benjamin; Lenarcic, Erik; Vincent, Heather A et al. (2015) Human cytomegalovirus TRS1 protein associates with the 7-methylguanosine mRNA cap and facilitates translation. Proteomics 15:1983-94
Jeffers-Francis, Liesl K; Burger-Calderon, Raquel; Webster-Cyriaque, Jennifer (2015) Effect of Leflunomide, Cidofovir and Ciprofloxacin on replication of BKPyV in a salivary gland in vitro culture system. Antiviral Res 118:46-55
Selitsky, Sara R; Baran-Gale, Jeanette; Honda, Masao et al. (2015) Small tRNA-derived RNAs are increased and more abundant than microRNAs in chronic hepatitis B and C. Sci Rep 5:7675

Showing the most recent 10 out of 112 publications