Justė Aželytė

Name Surname Justė Aželytė

Natural Sciences, Zoology (N014)

Institute, laboratory: Institute of Ecology, P. B. Šivickis laboratory of parasitology

Scientific Supervisor: Dr Vaidas Palinauskas

Consultant Supervisor: -

Study period: 2021-10-01 – 2025-09-30

Research theme: Avian malaria parasites: genetic structure, interaction with gut microbiome and factors shaping parasite development

Short description: The aim of the study – to ascertain the population structure of avian malaria parasites and its effects on parasite virulence and to determine the composition of host and vector microbiota and its changes during malaria infection.

The objectives are:

  • To determine a genetic structure (multiclonality) of avian malaria parasites in naturally infected birds.
  • To investigate the change of multiclonality of avian malaria parasite during infection and how it affects parasite virulence.
  • To estimate the impact of avian malaria parasite on the gut microbiota of the host.
  • To estimate the impact of avian malaria parasite on vector gut microbiota;
  • To determine the effect of vector gut microbiota on sporogony of avian malaria parasite.

Publications:

Platonova, E.; Aželytė, J.; Iezhova, T.; Ilgūnas, M.; Mukhin, A.; Palinauskas, V. Experimental study of newly described avian malaria parasite Plasmodium (Novyella) collidatum n. sp., genetic lineage pFANTAIL01 obtained from South Asian migrant bird. Malar. J. 2021, 20, 82, doi:10.21203/rs.3.rs-103610/v1

Projects:

European Union Structural Funds “Virulence of avian malaria: untangling genetic players for infection severity”. Award No 09.3.3-LMT-K-712-01-0016, (2017–2021). Investigator.

Research Council of Lithuania. “Investigation of factors limiting the spread of avian haemosporidian infections”. Award No S-MIP-20-25, (2020–2022). Investigator.

Training courses:

  1. 2020-01-13 – 2020-07-10. Exchange studies at Lund University (Lund, Sweden) under ERASMUS+ program. A participation of 10 weeks course of Molecular ecology and evolution. The research group of Lund University Molecular Ecology and Evolution laboratory taught new molecular methods applied in haemosporidian parasite studies.
  2. 2021-09-14 – 2021-10-13. Internship at National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment (Paris, France). The purpose of the internship was to learn new methods used in research: application of serological methods, analysis of sequenced genomic data using bioinformatic programs.

Conferences:

The International Online Conference on Blood Parasites of Wildlife, September 14 -15, 2020.

The 9th Conference of the Scandinavian-Baltic Society for Parasitology, April 21-23, 2021.

Contacts: e-mail, phone: juste.azelyte@gamtc.lt