Joenel’s research interests combine the fields of immunology, infectious diseases, and plant/agal biotechnology with the overall goal of producing inexpensive pharmaceuticals such as vaccines for prophylactic and therapeutic use for human and animal health. To this end, his research activities include vaccine design, production, delivery, and evaluation of serological responses. Correlation of protection assays include meningococcal Serum Bactericidal Assays (SBAs) and pneumococcal Multiplex Opsonophagocytic Assays (MOPAs).
He holds a Cumming School of Medicine / Alberta Health Services Clinical Research Fund Grant to study meningococcal protection in Paroxysmal Nocturnal Hemoglobinuria patients. He is also a co-investigator with the CIHR-funded CIRN (Canadian Immunization Research Network), studying 1) preparedness for and response to meningococcal outbreaks in adolescents and young adults, and 2) meningococcal protection in adolescents.