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Research interests

Our laboratory is composed of an eclectic group of scientists interested in dissecting the complex interactions between pathogenic bacteria and the mammalian host. Currently, we are focusing on multidrug-resistant (MDR) bacteria, which have been recognized by the World Health Organization as a serious threat to human health. We take advantage of multidisciplinary approaches and outstanding collaborations to combine techniques from bacteriology, genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, structural biology, cellular biology, and immunology with primary ex vivo tissue culture models and a variety of murine models of infection, to address our favorite questions. Our ultimate goal is to understand the basic principles of MDR-bacterial pathogenesis as well as to develop a platform for the discovery of targets that could be exploited for the generation of much-needed therapies.

Current Projects

S. aureus Biology

  • Regulation of virulence factors (transcription, post-transcription, and secretion)

  • Adaptation to niches

  • Genome changes - in collaboration with Bo Shopsin and Harm van Bakel.

  • Epidemiology of Infection - in collaboration with Bo Shopsin

  • B-cell epitope discovery - in collaboration with  Gregg Silverman

Toxin Biology

  • Mechanism of cell death

  • Role of toxins in the pathophysiology of S. aureus infection in vivo

  • Structure/Function of toxins and host receptors - in collaboration with Damian Ekiert and Gira Bhabha

Anchor 1

Host-Pathogen Interactions

  • Human Leukocytes and bacterial pathogens

  • Development of new mouse models - in collaboration with Sergei Koralov

  • Autophagy and bacterial infection - in collaboration with Ken Cadwell

  • Human gene polymorphisms (CCR5 and DARC) 

MDR Gram-negative bacteria

Omics of Infectious Diseases


  • Development of novel biologics - in collaboration with Janssen Biotech

  • New vaccines against S. aureus infections


COVID-19 Microbial Biorepository of Associated Infections

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