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Robert O. Watson

Principle Investigator

Ph.D.: Jorge Galan, Ph.D., Yale University

Postdoc: Jeffery Cox, Ph.D., UCSF

Interests: Bacterial pathogenesis, innate immunity, bacterial genetics, autophagy, pathogen sensing

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Kristin L. Patrick

Principle investigator

Ph.D.: Christian Tschudi, Ph.D., Yale University

Postdoc: Nevan Krogan, Ph.D. and Christine Guthrie Ph.D., UCSF

Interests: I study post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression during the innate immune response to bacteria. Specifically, I'm investigating how bacteria like M. tuberculosis may influence host gene expression at the level of pre-mRNA splicing.


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Samantha Bell

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

B.S. Jeffrey Brodsky, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh

Ph.D.: Jeffery Cox, Ph.D., UCSF

Interests: I'm interested in dissecting the pathways in a macrophage that allow it to recognize and respond to M. tuberculosis infection. I want it to understand the players involved, their cellular functions, and their mechanisms of regulation. In addition, I'm interested in how these pathways, initiated immediately upon infection, contribute to controlling M. tuberculosis in vivo in a mouse model of infection.

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Caitlyn Hoffpauir

GRADUATE STUDENT, MEDICAL SCIENCES

B.S. Texas A&M University

Interests: I’m interested in interrogating the pathogenesis of different intracellular pathogens. Specifically, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a stealthy pathogen that is able to maintain its niche for the lifespan of the host. I want to better understand how Mycobacterium tuberculosis modulates the innate immune response once inside a host macrophage and how the host recognizes and responds to infection.

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Catherine Weindel

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

Ph.D.: Brigette Huber, Ph.D., Tufts University

Interests: Robust activation of proinflammatory pathways is crucial to fight infection; tight control must be maintained to prevent chronic inflammation. Understanding the factors involved in this balance will inform how our immune system differentiates between “self” and “non-self”, maintains peripheral tolerance, and initiates a productive immune response upon infection. My current work interrogates the role of LRRK2, a Parkinson’s Disease kinase, during infection with M. tuberculosis.

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Kelsi West

GRADUATE STUDENT, GENETICS

M.P.H. in Epidemiology, East Tennessee State University

B.S. Salisbury University

Interests: I am interested in the regulation of gene expression upon bacterial infection. I want to understand how these genes are regulated post-transcriptionally and play a role in host and/or bacteria survival, specifically through the regulation of splicing. I am investigating how bacteria can modulate this response for their benefit through different sensing pathways.

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Krystal Vail

GRADUATE STUDENT AND VETERINARY ANATOMICAL PATHOLOGY RESIDENT

D.V.M. Tuskegee University

M.S. Barry University

Interests: I am interested in understanding the molecular pathways that control bacterial survival in macrophages and the innate immune response to infection. My work is focused on elucidating the mechanisms by which the intracellular pathogen, Mycobacterium leprae interfaces with the innate immune system.

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Timothy Fitzsimons

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

Ph.D. John Boyce, Ph.D. Monash University

Interests: I am interested in the interplay between the host and pathogens. I want to understand how the host detects and responds to bacterial pathogens and the mechanisms by which the bacteria actively subvert these host responses. Specifically, I am working to understand some of the host pathways involved in M. tuberculosis and S. Typhimurium infection, and how the bacteria manipulate these pathways to establish their own replicative niche.

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Allison Wagner

GRADUATE STUDENT, MEDICAL SCIENCES

B.S. California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

M.A. Paul Knoepfler, Ph.D., California State University, Sacramento

Interests: I am interested in how host gene expression is regulated by splicing during bacterial infection and what splicing factors are involved in the innate immune response. I want to understand if there are bacterial effectors that modulate host splicing to promote bacterial survival.

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Haley Scott

GRADUATE STUDENT, MEDICAL SCIENCES

B.S. Cornell University: Research with Dr. Jack Freed

Interests:

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Kendall Green

UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCHER

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Kaitlyn Carter

UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCHER

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Kayla Lopez

UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCHER


Former lab members

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Katie Grantham

RESEARCH ASSISTANT/LAB MANAGER

B.S. Texas A&M University

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Morgan Riba

UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCHER

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Hannah Wilson

UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCHER