VMS at NDSU
As a department, our main concerns are exploring novel research and sharing with students our fascination and knowledge of dynamic disciplines in microbiology, including: bacteriology, epidemiology, fungal biology, immunology, molecular biology, parasitology, and virology. We work to achieve excellence in these areas by creating a student-centered environment that values diversity and encourages discovery, ingenuity, integrity, and collegiality.
VMS Research Highlights
Fisher research featured
The Fisher lab uses cockroaches to understand how pathogens like Stenotrophomonas maltophilia cause diseases like cystic fibrosis...and everyone seems to be interested in this model system these days. Their research was recently featured in the NDSU Spectrum and here on WDAY TV.
Master's student, Meredith Irsfeld, recently received an Honorable Mention in the national NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program. Meredith works in Dr. Birgit Pruess's lab and studies chemicals that inhibit biofilm formation.
Bergholz research featured
The North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station recently released its 2013 Annual Highlights. Dr. Teresa Bergholz's research is featured on page 5 in an article called, "Researchers Work to Make Food Safer." The story centers on the work that Master's student, Deepti Tyagi, and research specialist, Julie Sherwood, are doing to understand how foodborne pathogens survive on lettuce after harvesting and packaging.
Micro in the News
Flashback: archaea revealed!
This month, The Scientist published an interesting story about the technique that made possible Carl Woese’s discovery of Domain Archaea. George Fox, professor of biology and biochemistry at the University of Houston, who was a postdoc in the Woese lab at the time of the discovery, argues that if modern sequencing techniques had been used, the archaea would have been missed and would have been classified as “an odd niche of bacteria.” Image License.
Chasing a fungal pathogen
mBiosphere recently published a fun profile of June Kwon-Chung, chief of the Molecular Microbiology Section in the Laboratory of Clinical Infectious Disease at NIAID. She has spent the last 40 years hunting, and then trying to understand, a species of the fungus, Cryptococcus, called gattii. While its sister fungus, C. neoformans mostly infects AIDS patients, C. gattii, usually only infects healthy people. It turns out these people aren’t quite as healthy as initially thought, and Kwon-Chung explains why in a recent mBiosphere paper. Image Source: Nephron. Image License.