Phone: (979) 845-9189
Infectious diseases exact a heavy toll on human and animal health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports, 160,000 Americans die each year with an infectious disease as the underlying cause of death. Salmonella enterica induced enterocolitis is the second most frequent cause of bacterial food-borne illness in the United States, with an estimated 1.4 million cases per year. Although Salmonella enterica can cause life-threatening infections in people, the organisms usually do not induce overt clinical signs in certain host species, such as adult birds, cats, and dogs. The silent colonization status often complicates the effort of diagnosis and prevention, thereby contributing to the transmission of salmonellosis. In addition to Salmonella organisms, many other bacterial and fungal pathogens can cause life-threatening diseases in animals. My research focuses on pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases. Listed here are on-going research projects in my laboratory. 1. Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis colonization of chickens: The molecular interaction between bacterial virulence genes and host cationic antimicrobial peptides. 2. Surveillance of Salmonella enterica in companion Animals. The surveillance of Salmonella in dogs, cats, and horses are investigated using both classical and molecular microbiology approaches. 3. Prevalence of Salmonella and other microbial pathogens in Bobwhite Quail. 4. Preclinical analysis of a novel antifungal agent named Occidiofungin. Murine systemic and gastrointestinal candidiasis models are utilized to evaluate the efficacy of this drug.
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