Microbial Biotechnology Faculty

Learn more about this group by contacting Dr. Christine Szymanski (cszymans@uga.edu) or Dr. Stephen Trent (strent@uga.edu).

Microbes play critical roles in our biology and the ecosystem that we live in. Since this diverse group of microorganisms has been in existence for much longer than we have, they represent an untapped resource of unique enzymes and systems for exploitation. Members of the Microbial Biotechnology Interest Group use microbial genetics, laboratory evolution, glycoengineering and synthetic biology to develop new and improved vaccines and adjuvants for use in medicine, food microbiology, biofuels, fermentation and other industrial processes.

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Michael Adams

Distinguished Research Professor
Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

Functional and structural genomics, metabolism and enzymology of organisms
that grow near 100C.

Website

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Mark A. Eiteman

Professor
Microbiology

Fermentation and biotechnology with emphasis on microbial processes to generate fuels and chemicals; nutrient-limited processes; central metabolism and the effect of redox constraints.

Website

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David Garfinkel

Professor
Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

Retrovirus-like transposons in budding yeast, control of transposition, restriction factors.

Website

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Eric Lafontaine

Associate Professor
Infectious Diseases

Bacterial pathogenesis; role of adhesins in virulence; vaccine development.

Website

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Rob Maier

Professor
Microbiology

Physiology and metallobiology of pathogenic bacteria.

Website

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Cory Momany

Associate Professor
Pharmaceutical & Biomedical Sciences

X-ray crystallography of macromolecules, prokaryotic transcriptional regulators.

Website

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Ellen Neidle

Professor
Microbiology

We use the easy genetic system of a  soil bacterium, Acinetobacter baylyi ADP1,to study diverse
aspects of gene expression and chromosomal rearrangements.This research has implications
for medical issues (gene amplification), environmental issues (bioremediation),
biotechnology/bioenergy (conversion of lignin to biofuels), and evolution (new methods for experimental evolution).

Website

Christine Szymanski

Christine Szymanksi

Professor
Microbiology

Examining host-pathogen interactions in order to understand and exploit
virulence mechanisms used by bacteria colonizing mucosal surfaces.

Website

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Michael Terns

Distinguished Research Professor
Biochemistry & Molecular Biology; Genetics; Microbiology

We study CRISPR-Cas immune systems that protect prokaryotes from viruses and provide
powerful research tools for important biotechnology and biomedical applications.

Website

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Professor Stephen Trent

M. Stephen Trent

Distinguished Professor
Infectious Diseases

Characterizing the assembly of bacterial surface structures, Development of vaccines for viral
and bacterial pathogens, Systems approaches to understanding microbial diseases

Website

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Janet Westpheling

Professor
Genetics

Molecular genetics of Steptomyces metabolic developmental processes; enhanced biofuel product by bacteria.

Website

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William Whitman

Professor
Bioinformatics; Microbiology

Evolution, ecology, physiology of methane-producing archaeon Methanococcus,
the marine alpha proteobacteria, and soil bacteria.

Website