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Member Profile

Membership type: full

Vanessa Adaui Sicheri

Country of origin: Peru Currently in: Germany, Hamburg General field of specialization: Biological Systems and Organisms
Academic Background


2011 Doctorate Medical and Health Sciences incl Neurosciences
Research and Profession

Current Research Activities

Structural, Cell and Molecular Biology

In the field of cutaneous leishmaniasis (2005 - present), my research work has aimed at understanding the contribution of parasite factors (species, genetic diversity, gene expression profiles, and presence of Leishmaniavirus LRV1) to chemotherapy outcome among patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis. Another research interest has been the development of molecular tools (e.g. parasite load quantitation) to aid in diagnosis and chemotherapy follow up of patients. Currently, my research is focused on the establishment of CRISPR-Cas9 technology (a highly efficient genetic engineering tool for genome editing) in Leishmania braziliensis for studying gene function in this important human pathogen, which is the main cause of cutaneous and mucocutaneous leishmaniasis in South America.

Research Keywords: 
tegumentary leishmaniasis
Leishmania braziliensis
reverse genetics
functional genetic analyses

Publications resulting from Research: 

1. Yardley V, Ortuño N, Llanos-Cuentas A, Chappuis F, De Doncker S, Ramirez L, Croft S, Arevalo J, Adaui V, Bermudez H, Decuypere S, Dujardin JC. (2006) American tegumentary leishmaniasis: Is antimonial treatment outcome related to parasite drug susceptibility? J Infect Dis. 194(8): 1168-1175.

2. Best I, Adaui V, Verdonck K, González E, Tipismana M, Clark D, Gotuzzo E, Vanham G. (2006) Proviral load and immune markers associated with human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1)-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) in Peru. Clin Exp Immunol. 146(2): 226-233.

3. Adaui V, Verdonck K, Best I, González E, Tipismana M, Arévalo J, Vanham G, Campos M, Zimic M, Gotuzzo E. (2006) SYBR green-based quantitation of human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 proviral load in Peruvian patients with neurological disease and asymptomatic carriers: Influence of clinical status, sex and familial relatedness. J Neurovirol. 12(6): 456-465.

4. Rozas M, De Doncker S, Adaui V, Coronado X, Barnabé C, Tibayrenc M, Solari A, Dujardin JC. (2007) Multilocus polymerase chain reaction restriction fragment-length polymorphism genotyping of Trypanosoma cruzi (Chagas disease): taxonomic and clinical applications. J Infect Dis. 195(9):1381-1388.

5. Arevalo J, Ramirez L, Adaui V, Zimic M, Tulliano G, Miranda-Verastegui C, Lazo M, Loayza-Muro R, De Doncker S, Maurer A, Chappuis F, Dujardin JC, Llanos-Cuentas A. (2007) Influence of Leishmania (Viannia) species on the response to antimonial treatment in patients with American tegumentary leishmaniasis. J Infect Dis. 195(12):1846-1851.

6. Boggild AK, Miranda-Verastegui C, Espinosa D, Arevalo J, Adaui V, Tulliano G, Llanos-Cuentas A, Low DE. (2007) Evaluation of a microculture method for isolation of Leishmania parasites from cutaneous lesions of patients in Peru. J Clin Microbiol. 45(11):3680-3684.

7. Gamboa D, Van Eys G, Victoir K, Torres K, Adaui V, Arevalo J, Dujardin JC. (2007) Putative markers of infective life stages in Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis. Parasitology 134(Pt 12):1689-1698.

8. Moens B, López G, Adaui V, González E, Kerremans L, Clark D, Verdonck K, Gotuzzo E, Vanham G, Cassar O, Gessain A, Vandamme AM, Van Dooren S. (2009) Development and validation of a multiplex real-time PCR assay for simultaneous genotyping and human T-lymphotropic virus type 1, 2, and 3 proviral load determination. J Clin Microbiol. 47(11):3682-3691.

9. Talledo M, López G, Huyghe JR, Verdonck K, Adaui V, González E, Best I, Clark D, Vanham G, Gotuzzo E, Van Camp G, Van Laer L. (2010) Evaluation of host genetic and viral factors as surrogate markers for HTLV-1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis in Peruvian HTLV-1-infected patients. J Med Virol. 82(3):460-466.

10. Torres DC, Adaui V, Ribeiro-Alves M, Romero GAS, Arévalo J, Cupolillo E, Dujardin JC. (2010) Targeted gene expression profiling in Leishmania braziliensis and Leishmania guyanensis parasites isolated from Brazilian patients with different antimonial treatment outcomes. Infect Genet Evol. 10(6):727-733.

11. Vanaerschot M, Maes I, Ouakad M, Adaui V, Maes L, De Doncker S, Rijal S, Chappuis F, Dujardin JC, Decuypere S. (2010) Linking in vitro and in vivo survival of clinical Leishmania donovani strains. PLoS One. 5(8). pii: e12211.

12. Adaui V, Schnorbusch K, Zimic M, Gutiérrez A, Decuypere S, Vanaerschot M, De Doncker S, Maes I, Llanos-Cuentas A, Chappuis F, Arévalo J, Dujardin JC. (2011) Comparison of gene expression patterns among Leishmania braziliensis clinical isolates showing a different in vitro susceptibility to pentavalent antimony. Parasitology 138(2):183-193.

13. Adaui V, Castillo D, Zimic M, Gutiérrez A, Decuypere S, Vanaerschot M, De Doncker S, Schnorbusch K, Maes I, Van der Auwera G, Maes L, Llanos-Cuentas A, Arévalo J, Dujardin JC. (2011) Comparative gene expression analysis throughout the life cycle of Leishmania braziliensis: diversity of expression profiles among clinical isolates. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 5(5): e1021. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0001021.

14. Adaui V, Maes I, Huyse T, Van den Broeck F, Talledo M, Kuhls K, De Doncker S, Maes L, Llanos-Cuentas A, Schönian G, Arevalo J, Dujardin JC. (2011) Multilocus genotyping reveals a polyphyletic pattern among naturally antimony-resistant Leishmania braziliensis isolates from Peru. Infect Genet Evol. 11(8):1873-1880. doi: 10.1016/j.meegid.2011.08.008.

15. Valencia BM, Veland N, Alba M, Adaui V, Arevalo J, Low DE, Llanos-Cuentas A, Boggild AK. (2012) Non-invasive cytology brush PCR for the diagnosis and causative species identification of American cutaneous leishmaniasis in Peru. PLoS One. 7(11):e49738. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0049738.

16. Veland N, Valencia BM, Alba M, Adaui V, Llanos-Cuentas A, Arevalo J, Boggild AK. (2013) Simultaneous infection with Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis and L. (V.) lainsoni in a Peruvian patient with cutaneous leishmaniasis. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 88(4):774-777. doi: 10.4269/ajtmh.12-0594.

17. Jara M, Adaui V, Valencia BM, Martinez D, Alba M, Castrillon C, Cruz M, Cruz I, Van der Auwera G, Llanos-Cuentas A, Dujardin JC, Arevalo J. (2013) Real-time PCR assay for detection and quantification of Leishmania (Viannia) organisms in skin and mucosal lesions: exploratory study of parasite load and clinical parameters. J Clin Microbiol. 51(6): 1826-1833. doi:10.1128/JCM.00208-13.

18. Cruz I, Millet A, Carrillo E, Chenik M, Salotra P, Verma S, Veland N, Jara M, Adaui V, Castrillón C, Arévalo J, Moreno J, Cañavate C. (2013) An approach for interlaboratory comparison of conventional and real-time PCR assays for diagnosis of human leishmaniasis. Exp Parasitol. 134(3): 281-289. doi: 10.1016/j.exppara.2013.03.026.

19. Nühs A, Schäfer C, Zander D, Trübe L, Tejera Nevado P, Schmidt S, Arevalo J, Adaui V, Maes L, Dujardin J-C, Clos J. (2014) A novel marker, ARM58, confers antimony resistance to Leishmania spp. Int. J. Parasitol: Drugs and Drug Resist. 4:37–47.

20. Suárez M, Valencia BM, Jara M, Alba M, Boggild AK, Dujardin JC, Llanos-Cuentas A, Arevalo J, Adaui V. (2015) Quantification of Leishmania (Viannia) kinetoplast DNA in ulcers of cutaneous leishmaniasis reveals inter-site and inter-sampling variability in parasite load. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 9(7):e0003936. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0003936.

21. Adaui V, Lye LF, Akopyants NS, Zimic M, Llanos-Cuentas A, Garcia L, Maes I, De Doncker S, Dobson DE, Arevalo J, Dujardin JC, Beverley SM. (2016) Association of the endobiont double-stranded RNA virus LRV1 with treatment failure for human leishmaniasis caused by Leishmania braziliensis in Peru and Bolivia. J Infect Dis. 213(1):112-21. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiv354. Epub 2015 Jun 29.

22. Jara M, Valencia BM, Adaui V, Alba M, Lau R, Arevalo J, Llanos-Cuentas A, Boggild AK. (2016) Quantitative kinetoplast DNA assessment during treatment of mucosal leishmaniasis as a potential biomarker of outcome: a pilot study. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 94(1):107-13. doi: 10.4269/ajtmh.15-0514. Epub 2015 Oct 19.

23. Martínez DY, Verdonck K, Kaye PM, Adaui V, Polman K, Llanos-Cuentas A, Dujardin JC, Boelaert M. (2018) Tegumentary leishmaniasis and coinfections other than HIV. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 12(3):e0006125. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0006125. eCollection 2018 Mar. Review.

Current profession

Current professional activities type: 

Workshop and Conference Attended

2015 Lima, Perú First National Workshop of Scientific Women “Generation of Knowledge in Science and Technology”. Organized by the National Academy of Sciences and IANAS (The Inter-American Network of Academies of Sciences).
2016 PECET, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellín-Colombia ‘International workshop on the standardization of a real time PCR assay for the quantification of parasite load for cutaneous leishmaniasis management in the Americas’.
2017 Toledo, Spain 6th World Congress on Leishmaniasis (WorldLeish-6)
2017 Berlin, Germany Annual Meeting of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
2018 Berlin, Germany 28th Annual Meeting of the German Society for Parasitology


National Academy of Science and Technology (ANCYT). Lima, Perú

Presentation given

Development of CRISPR/Cas9-based reverse genetics for Leishmania braziliensis and application to the study of differentially expressed target genes.
Berlin, Germany
Event: 28th Annual Meeting of the German Society for Parasitology (DGP)
Prizes, Grants and Awards

Other Awards

Aug 1998
'Honor to Success’ Award
Awarded by Procter & Gamble del Peru S.A. to University students who stood out for their leadership skills.
Apr 2000
Highest Distinction Graduation Award
Undergraduate studies in Biology. Faculty of Sciences and Philosophy, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia. Lima, Perú.
Aug 2001
First Prize in Immunology Research
Awarded by Laboratory AstraZeneca, Química Suiza S.A. Lima, Perú.