About us

Our research centers on the basic mechanisms of immune response using primarily non-mammalian models such as the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster and zebrafish Danio rerio. Our team use model organisms to investigate host-microbe interactions primarily related to globally important pathogens. In particular, we aim to find ways to combat tuberculosis. In addition, we have focused on identifying genetic alterations predisposing to the preterm birth and to the most important diseases related to prematurity (bronchopulmonary dysplasia and susceptibility to severe respiratory infections during neonatal period).

Currently, our research is funded by the Jane and Aatos Erkko Foundation, the Academy of Finland, Sigrid Juselius Foundation, Tampere Tuberculosis Foundation and Stiftelsen Alma och K. A. Snellman Foundation.

Research interests and expertise

  • Spontaneous preterm delivery: susceptibility genes and timing of childbirth
  • Mechanisms, prevention and treatment of the most common neonatal diseases
  • Molecular mechanisms regulating innate immunity
  • Development of a new vaccine against tuberculosis
  • Pathophysiology of Mycobacterial infection
  • Pathophysiology of Streptococcal infection


Major Publications

  1. Rämet M, Manfruelli P, Pearson A, Mathey-Prevot B, Ezekowitz RA. Functional genomic analysis of phagocytosis and identification of a Drosophila receptor for E. coli. Nature 2002;416:644-648.
  2. Kocks C, Cho JH, Nehme N, Ulvila J, Pearson AM, Meister M, Strom C, Conto S, Hetru C, Stuart L, Stehle T, Hoffmann JA, Reichhart J-M, Ferrandon D, Rämet M, Ezekowitz RA. Eater, a novel transmembrane protein mediating phagocytosis of bacterial pathogens in Drosophila. Cell 2005;123:335-346.
  3. Parikka M, Vuoksio M, Harjula SK, Halfpenny N, Oksanen K, Lahtinen MJ, Pajula E, Iivanainen A, Pesu M, Rämet M. Mycobacterium marinum causes a latent infection that can be reactivated by gamma irradiation in adult zebrafish. PLoS Pathogens, 2012, 8:e1002944.
  4. Vanha-aho LM, Anderl I, Hultmark D, Valanne S, Rämet M. Edin expression in the fat body is required for resistance against parasitoid wasps in Drosophila melanogaster. PLoS Pathogens, 2015, 11:e1004895.
  5. Anderl I, Vesala L, Ihalainen TO, Vanha-Aho LM, Andó I, Rämet M, Hultmark D. Transdifferentiation and proliferation in two distinct hemocyte lineages in Drosophila melanogaster larvae after wasp infection. PLoS Pathogens, 2016,12:e1005746.
  6. Valanne S, Salminen TS, Järvelä-Stölting M, Vesala L, Rämet M. Immune-inducible non-coding RNA molecule lincRNA-IBIN connects immunity and metabolism in Drosophila melanogaster. PLoS Pathog. 2019 Jan 11;15(1):e1007504. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1007504. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 30633769