Cécile Baronti is a passionate roller bladder at heart, often seen skating in full 80s gear while, by day, she manages the virus production platform at AMU. A biologist, with a PhD in virology, studying the host innate immunity and viral countermeasures developed by flaviviruses. Cécile currently holds a research engineer position that allows her to cultivate viruses and her love for them to grow. She has been one of the early members of EVA AMU with significant contribution in EVA’s success by building the virus collection held at the Unité des Virus Emergents lab. She is in charge of the viral collection of the unit from a technological, technical, logistical and financial standpoint.
Rapid-fire questions to Cécile!
What did you study ?
Biology, Immunology, Virology.
What is your favourite virus ?
Dengue virus, one of the first viruses I studied!
Something interesting you read recently?
A number of articles on the psychology of toxic people.
A fun hobby you picked up recently?
Rollerblading with my kids.
What brought you to virology and your current role at EVA ?
My love of science, and especially of human biology, host-pathogen interaction and interest in understanding the mechanisms of the infection, brought me towards virology, while the specific need for a virus collection brought me to EVA.
What do you find particularly interesting in your work?
I like to isolate viruses and new circulating viral strains. It means discovering the epidemiology of arboviruses in the world in real time. I really appreciated working through the pandemic, trying to identify the circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants and to identify the potential treatments that are effective against them.
Text by Semeli Platsaki, PhD