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Research Fellows Directory

Gong Cheng

Professor Gong Cheng

Research Fellow


Imperial College London

Research summary

Mosquitoes transmit pathogens of medical importance throughout the world. Approximately hundreds of million people develop mosquito-borne infectious diseases each year, and more than 1 million individuals die of these illnesses. Approved human vaccines are not yet available for most of mosquito-borne infectious diseases. Understanding the survival of microbes in mosquitoes and hosts may facilitate new strategies to control the transmissions and reduce the infections. Dr. Cheng leads a group investigating on the molecular interaction between mosquito-borne viruses and their vectors/hosts. His study intends to identify key factors in the pathogenesis and immunity of the flaviviral infection, and consequently develop novel strategy to limit these mosquito-borne viral diseases in nature. Multiple mosquito-borne flaviviruses, e.g. Dengue, West Nile, and Japanese Encephalitis viruses, are the pathogens of particular interest. The scientific aims of Dr. Cheng's lab include: (1) Determine the pathogenesis of mosquito-borne viruses in mosquitoes and mammalian hosts; (2) Investigate the defense strategies against mosquito-borne viral infection; (3) Develop novel vaccine strategies for prevention of mosquito-borne viral diseases. Recently, Dr. Cheng's lab got a series of progress in the dengue-mosquito interactions. His team successfully discovered multiple C-type lectins as key susceptibility factors to facilitate dengue infection in mosquitoes, and subsequently developed a vector-based vaccine strategy against dengue dissemination. Moreover, his group elucidated that multiple complement-like factors play vital roles against flavivirus infection in mosquitoes. These studies have opened up new areas of research for his laboratory and others in the field toward better understanding interaction between flavivirus and its arthropod vectors.

Grants awarded

Mosquito C-type lectins facilitate dengue infection

Scheme: Newton Advanced Fellowship

Dates: Mar 2015 - Feb 2018

Value: £111,000