Lena Alexopoulou
  • E-mail :[email]
  • Phone : +33 491269199
  • Location : Marseille, France
Last update 2017-09-20 15:25:30.756

Lena Alexopoulou PhD, HDR

Course and current status

1993 B.Sc. in Biology, University of Athens, Greece 

1993-1998 Ph.D. in Molecular Biology, University of Athens, Greece. The experimental work was done at the Hellenic Pasteur Institute at the laboratory of George Kollias

1998 Postdoctoral Fellow, Laboratory of Richard Flavell, Yale University School of Medicine, Section of Immunobiology, New Haven, CT, USA

1999 Human Frontiers Science Program (HFSP) long-term fellowship

2002 Associate Research Scientist, Laboratory of Richard Flavell, Yale University, School of Medicine, Section of Immunobiology, New Haven, CT, USA

2004 Head of the Toll-like receptors in immunity Laboratory, Centre d’Immunologie de Marseille-Luminy (CIML), Marseille, France

2004 Senior Research Scientist (CR1, CNRS)

2009 Habilitation (HDR), Aix-Marseille University, France

2013 Director of Research (DR2, CNRS)

Scientific summary

The work in my group is focused on the biological role of the innate Toll-like receptors (TLRs). We have shown that ligand sensing by TLRs leads to the activation of various signaling pathways that play a central role in many inflammatory conditions. Moreover, we discovered the existence of interplay between nucleic acid-sensing TLRs that controls their expression and function. Imbalance of this interplay has critical consequences since it can lead to the development of autoimmune diseases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).

Selected publications

Alexopoulou L, Holt AC, Medzhitov R and Flavell RA. Recognition of double-stranded RNA and activation of NF-kappaB by Toll-like receptor 3. Nature (2001) 413, 732-738.

Alexopoulou L, Thomas V, Schnare M, Lobet Y., Anguita J., Schoen R., Medzhitov R., Fikrig E., and Flavell R.A. Hyporesponsiveness to vaccination with Borrelia burgdorferi OspA in humans and in TLR1- and TLR2-deficient mice. Nat Med (2002) 8, 878-884.

Lund JM*, Alexopoulou L*, Sato A, Karow M, Adams NC, Gale NW, Iwasaki A and Flavell RA. Recognition of negative stranded RNA viruses by Toll-like receptor 7., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA (2004) 101, 5598-5603. *equal contribution

Wang T*, Town T*, Alexopoulou L*, Anderson JF, Fikrig F, and Flavell RA. Toll-like receptor 3 recognition of West Nile virus mediates viral entry into the brain causing lethal encephalitis. Nat Med (2004) 10, 1366-73. *equal contribution.

Feuillet V, Medjane S, Mondor I, Demaria O, Pagni PP, Gal·n JE, Flavell RA and Alexopoulou L. Involvement of TLR5 in the recognition of flagellated bacteria. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A (2006) 103, 12487-92.

Pagni PP, Traub S, Demaria O, Chasson L, and Alexopoulou L. Contribution of TLR7 and TLR9 signaling to the susceptibility of MyD88-deficient mice to myocarditis. Autoimmunity. (2010) 43:275-87.

Demaria O, Pagni PP, Traub S, de Gassart A, Branzk N, Murphy AJ, Valenzuela DM, Yancopoulos GD, Flavell RA and Alexopoulou L. TLR8 deficiency leads to autoimmunity in mice. J Clin Invest. (2010) 120: 3651-62.

Alexopoulou L, Desnues B, Demaria O. Toll-like receptor 8: the awkward TLR. Med Sci (Paris) (2012) 28:96-102.

Traub S, Demaria O, Chasson O, Serra F, Desnues B, Alexopoulou L. Sex bias in susceptibility to MCMV infection: implication of TLR9. PLoS One (2012) 7:e45171.

Desnues B, Macedo AM, Roussel-Queval A, Bonnardel J, Henri S, Demaria O, and Alexopoulou L. TLR8 on dendritic cells and TLR9 on B cells restrain TLR7-mediated spontaneous autoimmunity in C57BL/6 mice. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A (2014) 111:1497-502.

Desnues B, Macedo AB, Ordoñez-Rueda D, Roussel-Queval A, Malissen B, Bruhns P, Malissen M, and Alexopoulou L. The transcriptional repressor Gfi1 prevents lupus autoimmunity by restraining TLR7 signaling. Eur J Immunol (2016) 46: 2801-2811. 

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