Surface-exposed microbial channels, transporters and enzymes are determinant in many virulence mechanisms. Antimicrobial resistance results in part from the ability of bacteria to avoid the uptake or actively extrude antibiotic drugs. On the other hand pathogens may also evolve unique strategies to attach and colonize the host. These are examples that involve important surface-exposed proteins that arise as promising targets for therapeutic solutions.

The Structural Biotechnology Laboratory aims to explore alternative strategies to combat infectious diseases with a strong focus on research and development of protein and antibody-based antimicrobial solutions. The group envisages namely the design of novel strategies to target surface-exposed virulent factors responsible for infections and diseases caused by pathogenic microorganisms. A prominent approach of the group is to explore avian antibodies as alternative biological drugs to target microbial pathogens. This is a reemerging approach in the pharmaceutical industry since the use of hens enables generation of highly robust and specific antibodies and importantly provides a scalable, low-cost, high-yield production system due to antibody deposition in hen eggs.