Research Interests

Our laboratory employs molecular biology, microbiology, biochemistry, genomics/proteomics, small molecule analysis, etc. to study different aspects of bacterial biology and metabolism

Streptomyces Research:

The Streptomyces are microorganisms known for their ability to produce metabolites that have applications in medicine and agriculture. Even though most Streptomyces spp. have the genetic capacity to synthesize many such metabolites, only 10-20 percent of them are produced under laboratory conditions. We study the production of biologically relevant metabolites in Streptomyces clavuligerus, the organism used in the commercial production of the β-lactamase inhibitor, clavulanic acid.

Streptomyces clavuligerus mycelia and spores expressing eGFP

Mycobacteria Research:

Pathogenic mycobacteria are a public health problem/concern as they cause diseases such as tuberculosis and leprosy. We use different mycobacterial species as model organisms to study core biological processes used by these bacteria to survive under different conditions, with the aim of identifying essential pathways that could be targets for future drug development. We also study the evolution of pathogenicity/virulence in certain pathogenic non-tuberculosis mycobacteria of concern to human and veterinary medicine.

Clavulanic Acid


Antibiotic Resistance:

Antibiotic resistance is a global issue and our group conducts research on many molecular/biochemical mechanisms associated with its cause and spread. We also collaborate with medical doctors and veterinarians on specific projects dealing with antibiotic stewardship programs and on the epidemiology of some resistant pathogens. The goal of this work is to devise strategies to counter/neutralize the antibiotic resistance machinery in bacteria using synthetic and naturally produced compounds for therapeutic purposes.