Group leader: Mohlopeni Jackson Marakalala

Mohlopeni Jackson Marakalala

Office: Falmouth 3.27 (entrance 2, use lift to floor 3)

Research in the Marakalala lab seeks to identify host factors that drive immunopathogenesis during TB progression. We utilize molecular histology techniques on human lung tissues to characterize different stages of granuloma development. Targeting pathways associated with granuloma collapse and tissue destruction can be exploited for development of host-directed therapies against TB. We are also interested in mycobacterial genes that are conditionally essential for bacterial survival within the host.


Projects include:

  • Spatial characterization of human TB granulomas
  • Hyper-inflammation as a target for HDTs against TB
  • Intra-phagosomal manipulation to potentiate drug efficacy
  • Targeting Mtb ‘counteractomes’ to potentiate the anti-mycobacterial immunity
  • Development of Pott’s Disease (Spine TB) models


Mohlopheni Jackson Marakalala - Google Scholar


Recent publications:

  1. Marakalala MJ, Raju RM, Sharma K, Zhang YJ, Eugenin EA, Prideaux B, Daudelin IB, Chen PY, Booty MG, Kim JH, Eum SY, Via LE, Behar SM, Barry CE 3rd, Mann M, Dartois V, Rubin EJ. Inflammatory signaling in human tuberculosis granulomas is spatially organized. Nat Med. 2016 May;22(5):531-8
  2. Wilson GJ, Marakalala MJ, Hoving JC, van Laarhoven A, Drummond RA, Kerscher B, Keeton R, van de Vosse E, Ottenhoff TH, Plantinga TS, Alisjahbana B, Govender D, Besra GS, Netea MG, Reid DM, Willment JA, Jacobs M, Yamasaki S, van Crevel R, Brown GD. The C-type lectin receptor CLECSF8/CLEC4D is a key component of anti-mycobacterial immunity. Cell Host Microbe. 2015 17(2):252-9
  3. Mavrici D, Marakalala MJ, Holton JM, Prigozhin DM, Gee CL, Zhang YJ, Rubin EJ, Alber T. Mycobacterium tuberculosis FtsX extracellular domain activates the peptidoglycan hydrolase, RipC. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 111(22):8037-42
  4. Marakalala MJ, Vautier S, Potrykus J, Walker LA, Shepardson KM, Hopke A, Mora-Montes HM, Kerrigan A, Netea MG, Murray GI, Maccallum DM, Wheeler R, Munro CA, Gow NA, Cramer RA, Brown AJ, Brown GD. Differential adaptation of Candida albicans in vivo modulates immune recognition by dectin-1. PLoS Pathog. 2013 9(4):e1003315