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Research in the Karijolich lab is directed at understanding host-virus interactions. In particular, we work on a subfamily of viruses known as gammaherpesviruses (γHV), of which Kaposis sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) and Epstein Barr virus (EBV) are associated with human cancer. Studies of the host response to γHV infection have historically focused on protein-coding genes, thus our understanding of how the non-protein-coding transcriptome impacts infection is limited. We are exploring the role of ncRNAs in multiple aspects of γHV pathogenesis, including gene regulation, immune evasion, and cellular transformation. Using a multidisciplinary approach combining virology, immunology, RNA biochemistry, proteomics, and transcriptomics, it is our goal to bring light to what has been referred to as the dark matter of the genome . We anticipate that these studies will provide insight in to γHV pathogenesis, as well as contribute to our understanding of RNA biology.