OUR DEPARTMENT

The inhabitants of Earth are mostly microbes, and their activities are central to human welfare. Microbes can cause disease, but a properly functioning microbiome is essential for health. Microbes spoil food, but drive many forms of food production. Microbes mediate organismic decay, but catalyze numerous geochemical processes essential for life on Earth.

Research in the Penn Microbiology Department focuses on infectious agents that threaten global health, with an emphasis on understanding molecular mechanisms and developing key new methods. Areas of focus include pathogenic bacteria of the airway and gut, HIV/AIDS, insect- and rodent-borne viruses, herpes viruses, papillomaviruses, emerging infectious diseases and the human microbiome. On the host side, faculty study many areas of immunology related to infection, including innate and adaptive immunity, tumor immunology and vaccine development.

NEWS

Our manuscript describing the role of TCF-1 on silent chromatin is finally out. We are also on the cover and got a Preview. Thank you @ImmunityCP https://t.co/pZ7HwZDsJv

The AP examines efforts to use gene therapy to improve treatment of AIDS. The article features an approach by James L. Riley, PhD, @PennMicro, which knocks out the gene for the HIV entryway while also adding a gene to help T cells recognize and kill HIV. https://t.co/tLjOmNOBr3

Insights from @EJohnWherry on costs associated with new therapies: "If we're treating pts earlier in disease, can have a higher success rates" - saves $$ spent on therapies that don't work. @SIRIUSXM @BizRadio111

Congratulations to @EJohnWherry, professor @PennMicro, who was awarded SU2C “Convergence 2.0” Funding to Lead Team-Based Investigation of Gynecologic Cancer Therapies. https://t.co/8SXHBkb3Sr

Fantastic seminar by Shaeri Mukherjee today @PennMicro on Legionella manipulating host ER. If bacteria engineer their host cells so highly, that can only mean on thing for parasitologists: we have not even found the tip of the iceberg yet for parasites like crypto & toxo.

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EVENTS

Virology Seminar
Tuesday, February 27th, 12pm. 209 Johnson Pavilion
Elinor Willis (Hensley Lab) “An mRNA-based vaccine overcomes maternal antibody inhibition of antibody responses to influenza in mice” and Devin Fisher (Lopez Lab) “Defective viral genome-derived oligonucleotides induce protective antibodies and CD8+ T-cells during vaccination”

Microbiology Seminar
Wednesday, February 28th, 12pm. CRB Auditorium
George Shaw, MD/PhD, Univ Pennsylvania

Prokaryotic Seminar
Friday, March 2nd, 12pm. 209 Johnson Pavilion
Scott Sherrill-Mix (Bushman Lab) “Metagenomic bioinformatics: the search for a placental microbiome and a survey of bilaterian gut communities”