Akram Da’darah, M.Sc. Ph.D. is a Associate Professor at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine who joined the Molecular Helminthology Laboratory in 2010. Dr. Da’darah studies schistosomiasis, a major human parasitic disease caused by helminth parasites of the genus Schistosoma, also known as “Blood Flukes”. His main research focuses on Host-Parasite interaction. The overall objective of his research is to understand how schistosome parasites are able to survive in the host for several years, as well as to identify novel candidates that can be used as drug targets and/or vaccine candidates.
Prior to joining Tufts University, Akram has worked at the Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases/Harvard School of Public Health for twelve years as a post-doctoral fellow, a research associate and a scientist. He has extensive experience in studying schistosome parasites.
He received his Ph.D. in Molecular and Biochemical Parasitology in 1997 from Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine/Hamburg University, Germany. His Ph.D. research focused on polyamine metabolic pathway as a drug target for human parasitic diseases. He also obtained a Master’s degree in Cytogenetics.
PhD, Hamburg University, Germany, 1997
MSc, Yarmouk Univeristy, Jordan, 1992
BSc, Yarmouk Univeristy, Jordan, 1990
Molecular and Biochemical Parasitology
Drug Discovery and Development: For parasitic diseases
Immune regulation and vaccine development.
Selected Research Projects
Host-Parasite interaction: This project investigates the interactions between schistosome parasites and their host. This will enhance our understanding of the mechanism(s) that allow the parasites to survive in their host for several years. In addition, this will result in the identification of novel therapeutic targets for schistosomiasis.
Vaccine development for schistosomiasis. This project will evaluate several novel surface parasites proteins as vaccine candidates against schistosome infections.
Drug development. We use molecular and biochemical approaches to identify novel targets. We perform high throughput drug-screens (in vitro and in vivo) to identify and validate parasite-specific inhibitors which will be developed as a therapy for schistosomiasis.