Glauber completed both undergraduate BSc (2009) and Masters (2012) studies at the Federal University of Ceara (UFC, Brazil) looking for alternative methods of vector control by mining plant compounds. In 2013, he joined the PhD program in LSTM with Dr. Mark Paine, where I have been unveiling the role of the enzyme, heme oxygenase, in hematophagous insects. Glauber is also a member of the Tsetse Research Group with Dr Alvaro Acosta-Serrano.
Heme oxygenase in hematophagous insects
Hematophagous insects ingest several times their body weight with each bloodmeal. However, how do they survive the high toxicity imposed by free heme? Heme oxygenases (HOs) are present in the genomes of mosquitoes and tsetse flies that transmit a wide range of tropical diseases including malaria and sleeping sickness. However, the role of this enzyme in blood feeding is unknown.
I am using heterologous protein expression and immunofluorescence techniques in order to explore the biochemical and physiological features of HO in the tsetse fly (Glossina morsitans morsitans) and in the malaria vector Anopheles gambiae. These investigations will shed new light on the role of HO in hematophagy.
(Left) The entire tsetse midgut, including anterior crop and proventriculus, has been removed from a male tsetse fly 5 days after ingesting a single blood meal. The green accumulations in the posterior region of midgut (near bottom) is a product of heme degradation by the enzyme heme oxygenase.
(Right) Male tsetse reproductive tissues stained with the fluorescent DNA marker DAPI (1:1000): under bright field microscopy, which shows both circular testes (a) and UV light where cellular composition is highlighted by the DNA dye (b).
(Left) The tsetse bacteriome is a specialized organ that houses the obligate tsetse symbiotic bacteria, Wigglesworthia glossinidia. The midgut region containing the bacteriome has been treated with the fluorescent DNA marker DAPI (1:1000) and is shown under bright field (a) and UV light (b).
Postgraduate Demonstrator (2015 – Present) Practical diagnostics course for the Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene at LSTM
PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT: MSc Open Days at LSTM
Biochemical Society – (2013 – Present)
British Society of Parasitology – (2014 - present)
2016 1st Prize from Biological Sciences Dean. Awarded for the best oral presentation at LSTM postgraduate research day.