Microbiology News

Microbiology’s Dokland named ASM Distinguished Lecturer

DoklandTerje Dokland, Ph.D., of the University of Alabama at BirminghamDepartment of Microbiology, has been named an American Society for Microbiology Distinguished Lecturer for 2017-2019. Dokland, a UAB associate professor, studies the structural biology of viral assembly and bacterial pathogenicity, using tools like cryo-electron microscopy and X-ray crystallography.

Beginning July 1, he will join a group of scientifically diverse lecturers who speak at American Society for Microbiology Branch meetings throughout the United States. Frances Lund, Ph.D., UAB chair of Microbiology, called Dokland’s appointment “a national honor.” Read more ...

Genetic clues to kidney disease uncovered

Briles.AAASUsing international genomic studies backed by proof-of-concept cell experiments, researchers have identified two genes that contribute to the chronic kidney disease glomerulonephritis.

This provides new genetic clues to understanding IgA nephropathy, an autoimmune kidney disease that commonly causes kidney failure. The findings are relevant to IgA nephropathy and other diseases with similar underlying molecular defects, such as inflammatory bowel disease, certain types of blood disease and cancer.

“Very little is known about the causes of IgA nephropathy, genetic or otherwise, so our discovery represents an important step toward developing better therapies for this disease,” said lead author Krzysztof Kiryluk, M.D., the Herbert Irving Assistant Professor of Medicine at Columba University Medical Center. Read more ...

Majoring in defense: UAB’s new Undergraduate Immunology Program

Briles.AAASIt doesn’t matter whether you live in Beverly Hills or a Brazilian favela — every human being is only a few inches away from disaster. From birth to death, on our arms, legs and everywhere else, each of us carries microbes that would love to get under our skin and reproduce, with potentially fatal results. A paper cut, an insect bite, an untimely rubbing of the eyes — it takes very little for bacteria, viruses and other invaders to get inside and start wreaking havoc. Read more ...

Three UAB faculty members selected as fellows by world’s largest general scientific society

Briles.AAASFaculty members from the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s College of Arts and Sciences and School of Medicine have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The AAAS is the world’s largest multidisciplinary scientific society and a leading publisher of cutting-edge research through its Science family of journals.

Charles Amsler, Ph.D., professor in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Biology, Steven Austad, Ph.D., distinguished professor and chair of the Department of Biology, and David Briles, Ph.D., professor in the School of Medicine’s Department of Microbiology and Department of Pediatrics, are UAB’s three representatives in the 2016 class of AAAS fellows. Read more ...

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Yother Diversity AwardDavid Briles, Ph.D.; Janet Yother, Ph.D.; Jocelyn Hauser; Kanupriya Gupta, Ph.D.Janet Yother, Ph.D., has a special knack for encouraging minorities who have chosen to pursue a career in science and mentoring them to become successful scientists. Her work to promote diversity in science education and training was recognized on February 13, 2014, when she received the UAB President’s Diversity Award for Mentoring.

"The mentoring award is a new category of diversity award,” explains UAB Microbiology Department professor David Briles, Ph.D. “It is for faculty who through their mentoring have had a significant impact on the diversity of UAB students and graduates. Janet mentored the first under-represented minority student to receive a Ph.D. while training in the UAB Microbiology Department. This success made it clear that our department could provide a nurturing environment for students of all stripes and has led to the training of many minority graduate students in the labs of microbiology faculty members.”

UAB President’s Diversity Awards are presented annually to recognize the significant achievements of faculty, staff and students who have worked to develop a more culturally diverse, competent and inclusive university community. Awards are given in five categories for projects or activities that best reflect the implementation of unit and/or campus diversity goals.