Alison Criss
The Criss laboratory focuses on identifying how N. gonorrhoeae resists neutrophil clearance. Specifically, we are addressing which neutrophil antimicrobial factors are directed against N. gonorrhoeae and which bacterial gene products defend N. gonorrhoeae from neutrophil killing. We use a combination of cell biology, molecular biology, bacterial genetics and biochemistry to address these questions.

Peter Kasson
The Kasson laboratory concentrates on applying new computational techniques and distributed-computing technology in three areas: membrane fusion, infection by influenza viruses, and rapid diagnosis of infectious diseases.

Brant Isakson
The Isakson laboratory aims to understand the role of signaling microdomains in mediating cellular communication within the vasculature, focusing on possible disregulation of these domains in disease states. They utilize novel cell biology and proteomic approaches, coupled with extensive validation in whole animal.

Steven Keller is a joint graduate student between the Isakson and Columbus Labs

James Casanova
One area of focus in the Casanova laboratory is the ability of the innate immune system to identify and defend against invading microorganisms. Phagocytes such as macrophages and neutrophils express so-called Pattern Recognition Receptors that recognize conserved motifs in bacterial/viral products. Such receptors can stimulate microbe engulfment, initiate an inflammatory response, or both. They have identified a novel receptor, BAI1, that selectively recognizes a surface component of Gram-negative bacteria, and mediates their engulfment by macrophages.

COMBREX (PIs and co-PIS: Richard J. Roberts, Simon Kasif, Martin Steffen, Charles Delisi, Daniel Segre, Dennis Vitkup, and Steven Salzberg) is a multifaceted project that aims to bring together the computational and experimental communities of biologists in the interest of improving our understanding of microbial gene function.