Research

About Us

Our long-term goal is to enhance current antimicrobial arsenal and further understanding of complex microbial communities. Our research program focuses on (i) the development and implementation of high‐ and low- throughput screening assays for the identification of novel small molecules with antimicrobial activity, (ii) the development and characterization of physiologically and industrially relevant multispecies in vitro biofilm models for the identification of potential drug targets, and (iii) the in vivo assessment of cytotoxicity and pharmacokinetics parameters and hypothesis‐ driven validation of antimicrobial drug targets for site colonization related to biofilm formation. This approach combines the benefits of physiologically and industrially relevant assays with a target validation approach superior to that typically encountered for either drug discovery screening or biofilm resistance studies.

Current work and collaborative research projects include (i) the investigation of the impact of biofilm structural features (i.e., porosity, diffusional distance, biomass, and biovolume) and physical fluid forces on the efficacy of known antimicrobial agents; (ii) the evaluation of potential antimicrobial challenge mechanisms as a strategy for in situ biofilm control; and (iii) the identification of novel chemical probes and microbial targets and development of novel drug delivery strategies in biofilm settings.

Collaborators

Notable Student Awards

Simone Stanley

  • 1st Place award at the Undergraduate Student Poster Competition [General Engineering and Engineering Education Session] at the 2016 AIChE Annual Meeting in San Francisco, LA

Mahtab Waseem

  • 1st Place award in the Environmental Division Poster Session at the 2020 Annual AIChE Meeting
  • 3rd Place award for her presentation at the 2017 ERN Conference in Washington, DC
  • 2nd Place award at the Undergraduate Student Poster Competition of the North Central Branch ASM 2016 Meeting held at Iowa State University
  • 1st Place award at the 2016 Washington Baltimore Hampton Roads-Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (WBHR-LSAMP)
  • 3rd Place award at the Undergraduate Student Poster Competition [Food, Pharmaceutical, and Biotechnology Session IX] of the 2015 AIChE Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City, UT

Other Awards

Dr. Jyothirmai Simhadri (Post-Doc)

  • 1st Place award at the 2018 Howard University Research Symposium in Washington, DC