MMI Fellow develops new model for parasite study
by Ruth Brandt, Morgridge Research Institute
Bruno Martorelli Di Genova wants to eliminate the use of cats in the study of the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, and the results of his groundbreaking research suggest he could do just that.
Martorelli Di Genova, a native of São Paulo, Brazil, whose background is in the study of parasites and neglected disease, came to Wisconsin in August 2016 to work in the laboratory of Dr. Laura Knoll in the Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology at UW-Madison.
The Knoll lab’s ongoing research centers on the study of chronic infection caused by the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, or T. gondii, a parasite that Martorelli Di Genova identifies as one of the leading causes of foodborne illness-related deaths in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that in other places throughout the world, particularly those with hot, humid climates and lower altitudes, greater than 60% of some populations have been infected by the parasite.