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Our research interests fall under a common umbrella we term the chemical and physical biology of infectious disease. Work is ongoing in two primary projects: 1) transition metal homeostasis (metallostasis) in bacterial pathogens; 2) hydrogen sulfide (H2S) sensing and reactive sulfur species (RSS) in the major nosocomial pathogens, Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Enterococcus facaelis and Acinetobacter baumannii.  We have also worked in the area of regulatory RNA structure and function, in viral translational frameshifting, and most recently in the replication of vertebrate coronaviruses, a complex group of viruses that are causative agents of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and COVID-19.


  • Persulfide sensing and Reactive Sulfur Species in Bacterial Pathogens
  • Metallostasis in Bacterial Pathogens

Past Projects:

  • Ribosomal frameshifting in RNA Viruses
  • Coronavirus Replication: RNA Structure and Protein-RNA Interactions

Subject areas:

  • Quantitative Biology and Biophysics
  • Metals in Biology
  • Life

Research Interests:

  • metal sensor proteins in pathogenic bacteria; NMR structural studies of regulatory RNAs in mammalian RNA viruses
Biochemistry, Biological Science, Cellular Biochemistry, Molecular Biochemistry
PhD, Vanderbilt University, Biochemistry, 1984
BS, Pennsylvania State University, Biochemistry, 1980
biological sciences