Viral Immune regulation and its contribution to skin pathogenesis. Merilyn is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pathology, Dunedin School of Medicine. She worked for the Imperial Cancer Research Fund in University of Cambridge with Lionel Crawford (FRS), before being awarded an HRC Repatriation Fellowship and returning to the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Otago. In 2014 she was appointed to the Department of Pathology. Her research interests include viral regulation of cell function and immunity in the skin, with a particular emphasis on human papillomavirus (HPV) and cancer. HPV causes persistent infections of cutaneous and mucosal skin and is the causal agent of cervical cancer. Although an effective prophylactic vaccine has been developed for the major cancer-causing HPV types, there is a continuing need for better therapeutics for HPV to address the health needs of individuals who are already infected with this high-prevalence virus. Understanding viral regulation of immunity by HPV and developing better immunotherapeutics to treat HPV are the focus of her research.