Maria del Pilar Quintana
Maria del Pilar Quintana is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Centre for Medical Parasitology, Department of Immunology and Microbiology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark. She received her undergraduate and master degree from Universidad Nacional de Colombia, and a Ph.D. from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden.
Dr. Quintana is a molecular parasitologist with deep interest in parasite-host interactions. As a master student in Marcela Camacho's lab at the Centro Internacional de Física, Colombia, she studied the egress of the parasite Leishmania amazonensis from its host cell. She then moved to Mats Wahlgren's lab at Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, where she studied Plasmodium derived antigens exported to the surface of the red blood cell, focusing on PfEMP1, SURFIN4.2 and parasite proteins involved in merozoite invasion. She is currently a member of the SURFACE team led by Professor Lars Hviid, where she has been involved in research projects related to soluble host factors in malaria pathogenesis and parasite immuno-evasion, endemic Burkitt's Lymphoma and VAR2CSA acquired immunity.
Dr. Quintana was a recipient of an Erasmus Mundus scholarship (ERACOL) and a Francisco Jose de Caldas grant to pursue her PhD studies. Her research program is now striving to use single single cell transcriptomics to study the immune response against malaria parasites as a tool to guide the design of new preventive and therapeutic measures to control this disease.