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 SARS-CoV-2, HIV, pathogenic bacteria of the airway and gut, cancer causing viruses, 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.

Special MicroIDEAs Workshop

Malik Muhammad, Director, Inclusion Initiatives and Social Justice Education, University Life at Penn, will present a special MicroIDEAs Workshop: "Broadening your Perspective" on Tuesday, Oct 10, 2023, in Reunion Auditorium, John Morgan Building.
malikThe multiple identities we hold play a role in our everyday lives whether we realize it or not. Now more than ever, it is imperative that we critically examine how our identities shape the way in which we engage with others, especially in our current sociopolitical climate. This interactive workshop will provide participants the opportunity to reflect on their own identity, explore identities other than their own, understand the impact of implicit bias & microaggressions, and explore effective ways to promote inclusivity.

Departmental Events

  • Prokaryotic Seminar

    Monday, Oct 2, 4pm, 209 Johnson Pavilion

    Anupama Khare, PhD :: NCI “Systematic identification of molecular mediators of interbacterial sensing and responses”

  • Virology Seminar

    Tuesday, Oct 3 12pm, 209 Johnson Pavilion

    Rachel Braun, Cherry Lab :: Rumi Habib, Shaw Lab “mRNA deadenylation machinery selectively targets interferon mRNAs to regulate antiviral immunity” "Env-Antibody Coevolution in SHIV-infected RMs as a molecular guide for V2 apex bNAb elicitation"

  • Microbiology Seminar

    Wednesday, Oct 4, 12pm, Austrian Auditorium, CRB

    Sarah Cobey, PhD  ::  Univ Chicago “Effective vaccination against influenza”


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