I study the skin microbiome and the pathobiont Staphylococcus epidermidis, identifying patterns in large compendia of data and testing molecular mechanisms in the laboratory.
I am driven by the stories microbes tell in order to live. My goal in research is to understand the functional diversity of the human microbiome by developing computational tools to facilitate the characterization of less studied species, strains and genes. My academic and research training allow me to probe this fundamental microbiological question using the wealth of publicly available 'omics data using computational methods. As an undergraduate at Bard College I majored in both biology and computer science and as a Ph.D. student in Dr. Deborah Hogan’s laboratory at Dartmouth College I studied microbial interactions between bacterial and fungal opportunistic pathogens. Now, as a postdoc in Dr. Julia Oh's lab, my focus is centered on deciphering molecular mechanisms of microbial and host interactions within health- and disease-promoting microbiomes, with a focus on the opportunistic pathogen Staphylococcus epidermidis. Specifically, I aim to develop and test the utility of a machine-learning model to identify virulence-associated transcriptional signals, validate the predictive utility of the model using gene knock-down experiments, and apply an investigation of gene essentiality to S. epidermidis behavior in polymicrobial co-culture.
Dartmouth College Ph.D., microbiology and immunology Adv: Deborah Hogan 2015-2021
Bard College B.A., biology and computer science 2011-2015