Public Health Research Institute Center and
UMDNJ Regional Biocontainment Laboratory
at the International Center for Public Health
UMDNJ - New Jersey Medical School
225 Warren Street
Newark, New Jersey 07103, USA
Phone: (973) 972-9104
Fax: (973) 854-3201
Influenza A is an orthomyxovirus whose main reservoir are the wild aquatic birds where usually influenza is asymptomatic. Some influenza viruses are able to infect other species, causing disease and establishing lineages in certain occasions. This is the case for humans, where viruses from the H3N2 and H1N1 subtypes are currently circulating among people. Due to the segmented nature of the genome, influenza viruses can reassort generating new influenza viruses with different host tropism. Besides, influenza viruses can jump to another host after acquiring certain mutations. For all these reasons, influenza A is a virus in constant evolution that needs to be watched out closely.
While a lot of attention is being focused towards avian and swine influenza viruses as those potentially responsible for the generation of the next pandemic, the role of equine and canine influenza (H3N8) in generating novel viruses with pandemic potential has not yet being evaluated. Dr. Solórzano has established reverse genetic systems for these viruses and she is using ferrets to test the pathogenicity and transmissibility of the equine and canine influenza viruses and their derivatives in this animal model. These experiments mimic human infections and are crucial to understand the dynamics of equine and canine influenza in humans. These studies will help to establish countermeasures in the event that this scenario ever becomes real. Dr. Solórzano is also interested in the replication of these and other influenza viruses in tissue culture, organ explants and animal models to understand the contribution of different genes to host specificity and pathogenicity.
In addition, Dr. Solórzano collaborates with the Animal Health Research Institute in Giza (Egypt) to characterize the H5N1 highly pathogenic influenza viruses from Egypt. The acquisition of mutations implicated in human adaptation is being assessed.
Alicia is also part of a project to characterize different swine influenza isolates from Spain in terms of pathogenicity. She has hosted and trained a PhD student from Dr. del Real’s laboratory in Spain and she is actually involved in the animal experiments.
Most of these experiments are conducted at the BSL2 and BSL3 facilities at the Regional Biocontainment Laboratory located at the Public Health Research Institute in Newark, NJ.
Solorzano A, Ye J, Perez DR (2010) Alternative live-attenuated influenza vaccines based on modifications in the polymerase genes protect against epidemic and pandemic flu. J Virol 84: 4587-4596. PMI: 20181702
Ma W, Lager KM, Lekcharoensuk P, Ulery ES, Janke BH, Solorzano A, Webby RJ, Garcia-Sastre A, Richt JA (2010) Viral reassortment and transmission after co-infection of pigs with classical H1N1 and triple-reassortant H3N2 swine influenza viruses. J Gen Virol 91: 2314-2321. PMI: 20484565
Steel J, Lowen AC, Pena L, Angel M, Solorzano A, Albrecht R, Perez DR, Garcia-Sastre A, Palese P (2009) Live attenuated influenza viruses containing NS1 truncations as vaccine candidates against H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza. J Virol 83: 1742-1753. PMI: 19073731
Wang S, Parker C, Taaffe J, Solorzano A, Garcia-Sastre A, Lu S (2008) Heterologous HA DNA vaccine prime--inactivated influenza vaccine boost is more effective than using DNA or inactivated vaccine alone in eliciting antibody responses against H1 or H3 serotype influenza viruses. Vaccine 26: 3626-3633. PMI: 18538900
Pappas C, Aguilar PV, Basler CF, Solorzano A, Zeng H, Perrone LA, Palese P, Garcia-Sastre A, Katz JM, Tumpey TM (2008) Single gene reassortants identify a critical role for PB1, HA, and NA in the high virulence of the 1918 pandemic influenza virus. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 105: 3064-3069. PMI: 18287069
Hickman D, Hossain MJ, Song H, Araya Y, Solorzano A, Perez DR (2008) An avian live attenuated master backbone for potential use in epidemic and pandemic influenza vaccines. J Gen Virol 89: 2682-2690. PMI: 18931063
Tumpey TM, Maines TR, Van Hoeven N, Glaser L, Solorzano A, Pappas C, Cox NJ, Swayne DE, Palese P, Katz JM, Garcia-Sastre A (2007) A two-amino acid change in the hemagglutinin of the 1918 influenza virus abolishes transmission. Science 315: 655-659. PMI: 17272724
Solorzano A, Song H, Hickman D, Perez DR (2007) Pandemic influenza: preventing the emergence of novel strains and countermeasures to ameliorate its effects. Infect Disord Drug Targets 7: 304-317. PMI: 18220962
Grimm D, Staeheli P, Hufbauer M, Koerner I, Martinez-Sobrido L, Solorzano A, Garcia-Sastre A, Haller O, Kochs G (2007) Replication fitness determines high virulence of influenza A virus in mice carrying functional Mx1 resistance gene. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 104: 6806-6811. PMI: 17426143
Baskin CR, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H, Garcia-Sastre A, Tumpey TM, Van Hoeven N, Carter VS, Thomas MJ, Proll S, Solorzano A, Billharz R, Fornek JL, Thomas S, Chen CH, Clark EA, Murali-Krishna K, Katze MG (2007) Functional genomic and serological analysis of the protective immune response resulting from vaccination of macaques with an NS1-truncated influenza virus. J Virol 81: 11817-11827. PMI: 17715226
Wang S, Taaffe J, Parker C, Solorzano A, Cao H, Garcia-Sastre A, Lu S (2006) Hemagglutinin (HA) proteins from H1 and H3 serotypes of influenza A viruses require different antigen designs for the induction of optimal protective antibody responses as studied by codon-optimized HA DNA vaccines. J Virol 80: 11628-11637. PMI: 16987975
Richt JA, Lekcharoensuk P, Lager KM, Vincent AL, Loiacono CM, Janke BH, Wu WH, Yoon KJ, Webby RJ, Solorzano A, Garcia-Sastre A (2006) Vaccination of pigs against swine influenza viruses by using an NS1-truncated modified live-virus vaccine. J Virol 80: 11009-11018. PMI: 16943300
Tumpey TM, Garcia-Sastre A, Taubenberger JK, Palese P, Swayne DE, Pantin-Jackwood MJ, Schultz-Cherry S, Solorzano A, Van Rooijen N, Katz JM, Basler CF (2005) Pathogenicity of influenza viruses with genes from the 1918 pandemic virus: functional roles of alveolar macrophages and neutrophils in limiting virus replication and mortality in mice. J Virol 79: 14933-14944. PMI: 16282492
Tumpey TM, Basler CF, Aguilar PV, Zeng H, Solorzano A, Swayne DE, Cox NJ, Katz JM, Taubenberger JK, Palese P, Garcia-Sastre A (2005) Characterization of the reconstructed 1918 Spanish influenza pandemic virus. Science 310: 77-80. PMI: 16210530
Solorzano A, Webby RJ, Lager KM, Janke BH, Garcia-Sastre A, Richt JA (2005) Mutations in the NS1 protein of swine influenza virus impair anti-interferon activity and confer attenuation in pigs. J Virol 79: 7535-7543. PMI: 15919908
Fujimura T, Solorzano A, Esteban R (2005) Native replication intermediates of the yeast 20 S RNA virus have a single-stranded RNA backbone. J Biol Chem 280: 7398-7406. PMI: 15611054
Solorzano A, Zheng H, Fodor E, Brownlee GG, Palese P, Garcia-Sastre A (2000) Reduced levels of neuraminidase of influenza A viruses correlate with attenuated phenotypes in mice. J Gen Virol 81: 737-742. PMI: 10675411
Solorzano A, Rodriguez-Cousino N, Esteban R, Fujimura T (2000) Persistent yeast single-stranded RNA viruses exist in vivo as genomic RNA.RNA polymerase complexes in 1:1 stoichiometry. J Biol Chem 275: 26428-26435. PMI: 10833519
Rodriguez-Cousino N, Solorzano A, Fujimura T, Esteban R (1998) Yeast positive-stranded virus-like RNA replicons. 20 S and 23 S RNA terminal nucleotide sequences and 3' end secondary structures resemble those of RNA coliphages. J Biol Chem 273: 20363-20371. PMI: 9685388
Doctoral Degree, cum laude, Salamanca University, Spain, 2001.
Bachelor of Biology, Salamanca University, Spain, 1995.
Research Assistant Professor at the Department of Veterinary Medicine, University of Maryland, 2007-2011.
Postdoctoral Fellow at the Department of Microbiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, 2002-2007.