Research Projects
Immune Correlates of Protection to Influenza: Role of Adaptive Immunity

Programme(s) to which this project applies:

☒ MPhil/PhD ☑ MRes[Med] ☒ URIS
About the Project

Objective and Significance:

Antibody responses towards influenza can be directed to functionally conserved domains of the virus, such as the internal NP and difficult to access HA2 stem. The mechanism of action of antibodies that do not neutralize the virus, yet offer immune protection will be investigated using mouse vaccination models and human serum samples.

T cells kill virus-infected cells, placing immune pressure on the virus to adapt and evade recognition. The situations where immune escape can occur will be investigated by sequencing virus during infection.

Testing the protective efficacy and mode of protection of designer vaccines

Research Plan and Methodology:

Most of our work is performed on mouse and human models of influenza infection. We use techniques such as mouse models, influenza virus isolation and characterization techniques, Flow cytometry, single cell RT-PCR, and various immune assays such as ICS, ELISA and VNA.

About the Supervisor

Dr S Valkenburg, School of Public Health


Next Step?

For more information or to express interest for this project, please email the supervisor or the specified contact point in the project description.  Interested candidates are advised to enclose with your email:

  1. your CV,
  2. a brief description of your research interest and experience, and
  3. two reference letters (not required for HKUMed UG students seeking MRes[Med]/URIS projects).

Information on the research programme, funding support and admission documentations could be referenced online at the Research Postgraduate Admissions website. General admission enquiries should be directed to

HKUMed MBBS students interested in the Master of Research in Medicine (MRes[Med]) programme may visit the programme website for more information.  

HKUMed UG students interested in the Undergraduate Research Internship Scheme (URIS) may visit the scheme’s website for more information.