Pathogens, Vaccines & Immunity Faculty

Learn more about this group by contacting Dr. Wendy Watford (

The goal of the Pathogens, Vaccines, & Immunity group is to advance understanding of host-pathogen interactions and have a direct impact on human and animal health through translational research. We intensively study the biology of viral, bacterial, protozoal and helminth pathogens and how they interact with their hosts at the molecular, cellular and systems levels, particularly with regard to pathogenesis and immunity. This knowledge is applied to the development of diagnostics, therapeutics, novel vaccines and other medical countermeasures, including antibiotics, antivirals, small interfering molecules and detection/diagnostic devices for the protection of human and animal health against infectious diseases and cancer.

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Bar-Peled, Maor

Maor Bar-Peled Associate Professor Plant Biology Molecular cell biology of the wall, Biofuel and BioEnergy, Golgi as model for System biology, Plant Immunity. Website

Barb, Adam W.

Adam W. Barb Associate Professor Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Our goal is to define the impact of protein post-translational modifications on structure and function in the immune system. Website

Brindley, Melinda

Melinda Brindley Associate Professor Infectious Diseases Arenavirus glycoprotein structure and function; virus entry and membrane fusion; emerging virus-host interactions. Functional characterization of viral glycoproteins and host interactions. Website

Champagne, Don

Don Champagne Associate Professor Entomology Role of arthropod salivary factors in pathogen transmission and immune responses in their vertebrate hosts. Website

Docampo, Roberto

Roberto Docampo Professor Cellular Biology Cellular and molecular biology of acidocalcisomes; the role of polyphosphate in trypanosomatids. Website

Ellison, Courtney

Courtney Ellison Assistant Professor Microbiology Bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation, dynamics of bacterial nanomachines, microbial subcellular organization. Website

Etheridge, Ronald D.

Ronald D. Etheridge Assistant Professor Cellular Biology Toxoplasma’s Strategies to Manipulate Host Immunity Website

Frye, Jonathan

Jonathan Frye Research Microbiologist Microbiology We investigate the development and spread of antimicrobial resistant Salmonella, which is the most prevalent foodborne bacterial illness in the U.S. Website

Garg, Ankita

 Ankita Garg Assistant Professor Infectious Diseases Immunopathogenesis of intracellular pathogens (HIV and Mycobacterium tuberculosis); non-infectious morbidities in People Living With HIV Website

Glenn, Travis

Travis Glenn Professor Environmental Health Sciences; Bioinformatics; Toxicology Environmental Genomics; Crocodilians; Reptilian Genomics; Molecular Ecology. Website

Handa, Hitesh

Hitesh Handa Associate Professor Pharmaceutical & Biomedical Sciences Translational research in biomaterials (antifouling, antiplatelet, antibacterial, and antiviral) for tissue engineering and medical device applications Website

Harn, Donald

Donald Harn Professor GRA Distinguished Investigator Infectious Diseases Mechanistic analysis of parasite induced immune suppression. Translational research on immuno-modulation pertaining to inflammation based diseases. Vaccine development and trials. Website

Harvill, Eric T.

Eric T. Harvill Professor Infectious Diseases Interactions between microbial pathogens and host immunity in the mouse model using bacteria that naturally infect mice and closely related strains that are important human pathogens. Website

He, Biao

Biao He Professor GRA Distinguished Investigator Infectious Diseases Paramyxovirus-host interactions, vaccine development, emerging paramyxovirus and onocylytic virus. Website

Hogan, Jeff Hogan

Jeff Hogan Professor Infectious Diseases Website

Hoover, Tim

Tim Hoover Professor Microbiology Gene regulation in bacteria; regulation of flagellar biogenesis; control of RpoN-dependent transcription in bacteria. Website

Joyner, Chester

Chester Joyner Assistant Professor Infectious Diseases All facets of host-parasite interactions during malaria, ranging from molecular pathogenesis to malaria immunology to transmission Website

Karls, Russell

Russell Karls Senior Research Scientist Infectious Diseases Website

Klonowski, Kim

Kim Klonowski Assistant Professor Cellular Biology Development and regulation of immunological memory. Website

Kurup, Samarchith

Samarchith Kurup Assistant Professor Cellular Biology Basic immunology of the liver and blood stages of malaria Website

Lafontaine, Eric

Eric Lafontaine Professor Infectious Diseases Bacterial pathogenesis; role of adhesins in virulence; vaccine development. Website

Lin, Xiaorong

Xiaorong Lin Professor Microbiology; Plant Biology Human fungal pathogens, sexual reproduction and development in fungal pathogenesis Website

Logue, Catherine M.

Catherine M. Logue Professor Microbiology A bacterial pathogenesis/food safety lab that specializes in the detection and characterization of pathogens from food animal sources that impact human and animal health. Website

Maier, Rob

Rob Maier Professor Microbiology Physiology and metallobiology of pathogenic bacteria. Website

Mitchell, Aaron P.

Aaron P. Mitchell Professor Microbiology We use genetic and genomic approaches to understand mechanisms of fungal pathogenesis and drug resistance. Website

Momany, Cory

Cory Momany Associate Professor Pharmaceutical & Biomedical Sciences X-ray crystallography of macromolecules, prokaryotic transcriptional regulators. Website

Momany, Michelle

Michelle Momany Professor Plant Biology Cellular and molecular biology of polar growth in fungi. Website

Moorhead, Andy

Andy Moorhead Assistant Professor Infectious Diseases Establishment of the parasite/host niche by filarial worms, specifically Brugia malayi, one of the causative agents of lymphatic filariasis. Website

Moreno, Silvia

Silvia Moreno Distinguished Research Professor Cellular Biology, Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases Metabolism and drug development against protozoan parasites. Calcium signaling and storage in Toxoplasma gondii. Website

Muralidharan, Vasant

Vasant Muralidharan Assistant Professor Cellular Biology Molecular and cellular biology of the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Website

Norris, Karen

Karen Norris Professor Infectious Diseases Vaccine development for prevention of PCP and COPD, RSV infection, COPD; Immunce activation and aging, PAH; Immune-mediated mechanisms of pathogenesis, Type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrom, therapeuric testing; chronic immune activation/inflammation. Website

Park, Andrew

Andrew Park Associate Professor Infectious Diseases Transient evolution of pathogens. Evolutionary processes involved in cross-species transmission. Evolutionary constraints in viral epidemiology. Website

Paton, Douglas

Douglas Paton Assistant Professor, Department of Infectious Diseases Vector mosquito biology, malaria transmission, and vector/pathogen interactions. Novel interventions for malaria elimination. Website

Peterson, David

David Peterson Associate Professor Infectious Diseases Characterization of adhesion proteins which mediate host-parasite interactions in Plasmodium falciparum. Website

Phillips, Gregory

Gregory Phillips Professor, Department of Infectious Diseases, Center for Neurological Disease Research Basic and translational research to engineer bacteria to understand and develop new treatments for neurological diseases via the gut-brain axis.. Website

Quinn, Fred

Fred Quinn Professor Infectious Diseases Tuberculosis pathogenesis; host-pathogen interactions. Website

Rada, Balazs

Balazs Rada Associate Professor Infectious Diseases Role of reactive oxygen species in host-microbe interactions of the respiratory mucosa, neutrophil biology, pathomechanism of Pseudomonas infection in cystic fibrosis. Website

Rosenberg, Alex

Alex Rosenberg Assistant Professor Infectious Diseases Deciphering the mechanisms of host immune system manipulation by human eukaryotic pathogen - Toxoplasma gondii. Website

Sabatini, Robert

Robert Sabatini Professor Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Molecular and biochemical parasitology: DNA modification, homologous recombination and the regulation of antigenic variation in Trypanosoma brucei. Website

Sanchez, Susan

Susan Sanchez Professor Infectious Diseases Veterinary diagnostics; emerging clinical problems; antibiotic resistance; epidemiology of diseases with special emphasis in zoonoses. Website

Starai, Vincent

Vincent Starai Associate Professor Infectious Diseases; Microbiology Bacterial modulation of eukaryotic membrane dynamics for intracellular survival; SNARE-dependent membrane fusion biochemistry. Website

Strand, Mike

Mike Strand Distinguished Research Professor Entomology Molecular and evolutionary biology of insect parasites; virology, immunology, symbiont evolution, reproduction. Website

Szymanski, Christine

Christine Szymanski Professor Microbiology Microbial glycobiology lab characterizing bacterial glycoconjugate pathways, bacteriophage interactions with their hosts, and benefits of human milk oligosaccharides to develop novel vaccines and therapeutics for the prevention of diarrheal diseases and post-infectious neuropathies such as Guillain-Barré Syndrome. Website

Tarleton, Rick

Rick Tarleton Professor Cellular Biology Mechanisms of immunity and disease in Trypanosoma cruzi infection (Chagas Disease); Basic and applied biology of T. cruzi. Website

Terns, Michael

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

Tompkins, S. Mark

S. Mark Tompkins Professor Infectious Diseases; Toxicology Transmission and pathogenicity of zoonotic influenza virus infection and development of vaccination and the prevention and treatment of viral infections. Website

Trent, M. Stephen

M. Stephen Trent UGA Foundation 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

Tripp, Ralph A.

Ralph A. Tripp Professor and Georgia Research Alliance Chair in Vaccine and Therapeutic Studies Infectious Diseases; Toxicology Disease intervention strategies for important human pathogens and emerging infectious diseases of zoonotic origin; mechanisms of immunity; virus-host interface. Website

VanDrisse, Chelsey

Chelsey VanDrisse Assistant Professor, Genetics Department Our lab seeks to uncover novel regulatory mechanisms of biofilm formation to undermine bacterial survival in chronic infections. Website

Vogel, Kevin

Kevin Vogel Assistant Professor Entomology Integrating physiology, genomics, evolution, and microbial symbiosis to understand the biology of insect vectors of disease. Website

Watford, Wendy

Wendy Watford Associate Professor Infectious Diseases Regulation of host defense and tolerance by Stat transcription factors. Website

Woods, Robert

Robert Woods Professor Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Immunological carbohydrate-protein interactions studied by computational simulation and experimental methods. Website

Xie, Jin

Jin Xie Associate Professor Chemistry Nanoparticle-based imaging and drug delivery; radiation therapy and photodynamic therapy Website