Prof Stephen Kent and his group have been studying immunity to influenza B in recent years. Unlike Influenza A which circulates in birds and other mammals, Influenza B only circulates in humans and is theoretically an easier target to eradicate. Influenza B has 2 lineages and the cross reactivity of immunity across these 2 lineages is of great interest. Prof Kent’s group, along with Dr Hillary Vanderven at JCU, have been studying cross-reactive antibodies to influenza that can kill infected cells, and this turns out to be a key aspect of immunity to Influenza B.
Professor Stephen Kent trained as an infectious diseases physician and viral immunologist in Melbourne and the USA. He is a National Health and Medical Research Council Principal Research Fellow. Stephen heads a lab studying immunity to HIV and other variable and difficult to vaccinate against viruses. Several vaccine concepts tested in his lab have shown sufficient promise to progress into human clinical trials. Stephen remains active in infectious diseases clinical medicine caring for people with HIV. Stephen has published over 200 scientific papers and is well