|Our research focuses on understanding host-microbe interactions, specifically as related to plague pathogenesis. Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of plague, is a naturally occuring infection of some rodent populations. It is typically spread from rodent to rodent by their fleas. Humans may become an accidental host if they come into close contact with these infected animals or their fleas. Y. pestis has evolved to survive within each of these hosts (mammals and fleas) using a variety of virulence factors, all of which must be coordinated in response the host environment. Our work investigates factors that are important for Y. pestis survival in the mammalian host and the flea vector.|
We are currently seeking intelligent, independent, and motivated individuals to join our team.
YopK project: There are openings for graduate students and postdocs.
Insect colonization project: There are openings for graduate students and undergraduates.