Research Groups

Eric Muraille Group

Description of the research topics

Despite many advances, infectious diseases remain the major causes of morbidity and mortality in much of the world. The goal of our research group is to improve our fine understanding of the factors that orchestrate antimicrobial host protective immune responses in vivo.

We are working on several different aspects at the interface between the host and Brucella, the bacteria responsible of brucellosis, a worldwide zoonosis. Our main objectives are:
(i) the development and characterization of new more physiological experimental models of Brucella infection in mice (such as intranasal and intradermal infection models)
(ii) the characterization of Brucella reservoir cells in vivo
(iii) the identification of immune effectors implicated in the control of primary and secondary infections
(iv) the identification by Transposon-sequencing of bacterial genes specifically required to escape the immune response

Our research works are interdisciplinary (immunology, microbiology) and involve a close cooperation between the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) (animal facility, immunohistofluorescent microscopic analysis) and Université de Namur (UNamur) (flow cytometry analysis, Biosafety Level 3 laboratory).


Principal Investigator

Eric was trained as a Biological at the ULB. He is a FNRS senior research associate. Eric is mainly devoted to the theoretical and experimental study of the pathogenic host relationship in the model of infection by the Brucella bacteria in mice, as well as to the teaching of Immunology. He also tries to contribute to scientific communication as well as to the development of the theory of evolution.

PhD Student

Emeline joined the lab in 2019. She obtained a FRIA scholarship. The title of his research project is : Identification by Transposon Sequencing of bacterial essential genes for Brucella chronic infection in mice and cattle.
Audrey has a Master’s degree in Biomedical Sciences from the Université de Namur (Belgium). She performed her Master thesis on Brucella melitensis with Prs. Eric Muraille and Xavier De Bolle (URBM, Namur). She started her PhD in december 2021 in the team of Pr. Véronique Flamand. She is conducting preclinical research on the mechanisms of maternal antibodies impacts on neonatal immunity thanks to a NIH international funding with Pr. Arnaud Marchant.

Master Student

ROUMA, Thomas

Previous Lab Member

COPIN, Richard
Richard was funded by UNamur and completed a thesis from 2004 to 2010 entitled: " Character ization of the relationship between Brucella melitensis and the innate immune response of the mouse"
DEMARS, Aurore
Aurore joined the lab in 2016. She obtained a FRIA scholarship. The title of his research project is : Characterization of the early stages of pulmonary Brucella melitensis infection in mice.
Delphine was funded by FNRS and completed a thesis from 2010 to 2014 entitled: "Relationship between Brucella melitensis and the associated immune response after intranasal infection in mice"
Arnaud was funded by FRIA and completed a thesis from 2012 to 2016 entitled: "Impact de l'asthme allergique et de l'infection par Trypanosoma brucei sur le contrôle de l’infection par Brucella melitensis chez la souris"
Georges was funded by FRIA and completed a thesis from 2016 to 2020 entitled: " Identification des gènes bactériens indispensables lors d’une infection pulmonaire par Brucella dans le modèle expérimental murin"
VITRY, Marie-Alice
Marie-Alice was funded by FNRS and completed a thesis from 2009 to 2013 entitled: " On the components of adaptive immune response involved in the control of a primary and secondary infection by Brucella melitensis"