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People at Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology

Principal/Primary Faculty

Robert C. Alaniz, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Pathogen-specific T-cell Development during Mucosal Salmonella infection

Helene Andrews-Polymenis, DVM, PhD
Professor and Presidential Impact Fellow
Characterization of Salmonella enterica virulence genes

Carolyn Cannon, MD, PhD
Associate Professor

Zhilei Chen, PhD
Associate Professor
Antiviral Discovery and Biotechnology

K. Yeon Choi, PhD
Research Assistant Professor

Jeffrey D. Cirillo, PhD
Regents Professor
Molecular genetic analysis of bacterial respiratory pathogens

Paul de Figueiredo, PhD
Associate Professor
Molecular mechanisms mediating host-pathogen interactions, the evolution of pathogenesis, the discovery of novel anti-microbials, and the development of biotechnology platforms

David P. Huston, MD
Professor and Vice Dean - Houston campus
Immunobiology of Allergic Inflammation

Jenny Hyde, PhD
Assistant Professor
Pathogenic mechanisms and immune modulation of Borrelia burgdorferi, etiologic agent of Lyme disease

Koichi Kobayashi, MD, PhD
Research Professor

Julian Leibowitz, MD, PhD
Professor
Coronavirus replication and gene expression and the molecular basis of coronavirus pathogenesis

Alistair McGregor, PhD
Associate Professor
Herpes viruses, pathogenicity, vaccines and antivirals. Cytomegalovirus congenital infection.

Kristin Patrick, PhD
Assistant Professor
Regulation of RNA metabolism during bacterial infection

James Samuel, PhD
Regents Professor and Head
Wofford Cain Endowed Chair in Infectious Disease
Molecular pathogenesis and vaccine development for Q fever

Erin Van Schaik, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Research group: Samuel
vanschaik@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0834

Jon Skare, PhD
Professor and Associate Head
Molecular pathogenesis of Lyme borreliosis

Jack Smith, MD, PhD
Professor
Biomedical Informatics Core, Clinical Science & Translational Research

Jianxun (Jim) Song, PhD
Professor
Cellular regulation of T cell immunity and tolerance

Vernon Tesh, PhD
Professor
Pathogenic mechanisms of Shiga toxins

Brett Trusko, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Biomedical Informatics Core, Clinical Science & Translational Research

Hongbin Wang, PhD
Professor
Biomedical Informatics Core, Clinical Science & Translational Research

E. Sally Ward, PhD
Research Professor
Antibody engineering for the therapy of cancer and autoimmunity

Robert O. Watson, PhD, MPH
Assistant Professor
Host-pathogen interactions responsible for M. tuberculosis virulence

A. Phillip West, PhD
Assistant Professor
Mitochondrial regulation of innate immunity. Mitochondrial stress responses in cancer

Laura Ciaccia West, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Immune responses to cancer

Van Wilson, PhD
Professor
Molecular biology of papillomaviruses

Joint/Adjunct Faculty

Robert Chapkin, PhD
Regents Professor

Michael Criscitiello, PhD
Assistant Professor

Kevin Cummings, PhD
Assistant Professor

Jason Gill, PhD
Associate Professor
Bacteriophage Biology & Microbiology

Magnus Höök, PhD
Director, Center for Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases
Interaction of pathogens with components of the extracellular matrix

Julian Hurdle, PhD
Associate Professor
Center for Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases

Arul Jayaraman, PhD
Associate Professor
Holder of the Ray Nesbitt Development Professorship

Amminikutty Jeevan, PhD
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Investigate whether ultraviolet radiation alters BCG vaccination-induced host resistance in the well-established guinea pig model of low dose pulmonary tuberculosis

Lan Ly, PhD
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Vaccine-induced resistance in the guinea pig model of tuberculosis

Katja Mertens, PhD
Assistant Professor

Margarita Martinez-Moczygemba, PhD
Assistant Professor
Cytokine signaling and eosinophil biology

Karen Newell-Rogers, PhD
Professor

Sunita Varghees, MD
Assistant Professor

Yi Xu, PhD
Assistant Professor
Bacteria and host interactions; bacterial pathogenesis; bacterial activation of the actin cytoskeleton; bacterial breaching of the mucosal barrier

Dekai Zhang, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor
Molecular mechanisms of innate immune recognition

Emeritus Faculty

Roderick McCallum, PhD
Professor Emeritus
Community outreach programs to increase childhood vaccination rates

David McMurray, PhD
Professor Emeritus
Regulation of infectious disease resistance by vaccination and diet

John Quarles, PhD
Professor Emeritus
Antiviral vaccines and drugs and applications of flow cytometry in microbiology

Retired Faculty

Laura Hendrix, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Molecular pathogenesis of Bartonella spp

Research Staff

Karu Chockalingam
Research group: Chen
chockalingam@tamhsc.edu
979.436.9407
Research Scientist

Jyotsana Gupta
Research group: Andrews-Polymenis
jyotsanagupta@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0341
Associate Research Scientist

Prashant Jaiswal
Research group: Skare
jaiswal@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0355
Assistant Research Scientist

Xiaofeng Kang
Research group: de Figueiredo
xfkang@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0348
Associate Research Assistant

Blake Meche
Research group: Samuel
meche@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0352
Research Associate

Robbie Moore
Research group: Department
rmoore@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.9442
Laboratory Coordinator

Yijie Ren
Research group: Song
ren@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0790
Research Assistant

Alexandria Jade Roberts
Research group: de Figueiredo lab
alexandriajaderobert@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0699
Research Assistant

Sabona Simbassa
Research Group: Cannon
simbassa@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0867
Research Assistant

Marissa Talamantes
Research group: Andrews-Polymenis
talamantes@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0341
Research Assistant

Pamela Ulloa-Franco
Research Group: Patrick/Watson lab
ulloafranco@medicine.tamhsc.edu

Xiaofang (Ava) Xiong
Research group: Song
xxiong@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0790
Research Associate

Cooper Young
Research group: deFigueiredo
cayoung@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0358
Research Associate

Support Staff

Norma Jones
Senior Administrative Coordinator II
979.436.0345
jones@medicine.tamhsc.edu

Paula McCarver
Business Administrator I
979.436.0346
pmccarver@medicine.tamhsc.edu

LeeAnn Nichols
Administrative Coordinator I
979.436.0348
nichols@medicine.tamhsc.edu

Monica Ocon
Business Coordinator II
979.436.0347
mmocon@medicine.tamhsc.edu

Sandra Reyes
Business Coordinator I
979.436.0556

Graduate Students

Ana Cabello Aguirre
Research group: deFigueiredo
acabello@cvm.tamu.edu
979.436.0358

Ammar Abdullah
Research group: Cirillo
abdullah@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0364

Bhagath Chirra
Research group: Cannon
bchirra@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0867

Caitlyn Hoffpauir
Research group: Watson
cowen@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0352

Nadia El-Hamdi
Research group: McGregor
nelhamdi@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0790

Sahar Eshghjoo
Research group: Alaniz
eshghjoo@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0311

Abby Lei
Research group: West
lei@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0839

Diana Medina
Research group: Skare
medina@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0355

Hao Yun Peng
Research group: Song
hpeng@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0790

Alexandra Powell
Research group: Skare
apowell@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0355

Kelsey Wells
Research group: de Figueiredo
kmwells@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0358

Kelsi West
Research group: Watson
kwest@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0352

Postdoctoral Research Associates

Vanessa Ante
Research Group: Hyde
ante@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0871

Samantha Bell
Research Group: Watson
bell@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0273

Christine Birdwell
Research Group: West
cbirdwell@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0839

Joshua Bryant
Research group: West
jbryant@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0839

Elizabeth Case
Research Group: Samuel
ecase@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0351

Jugal Das
Research Group: Song
das@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0790

Mayukh Das
Research Group: deFigueiredo
mdas@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0358

Timothy Fitzsimons
Research Group: Watson
fitzsimons@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0273

Anthony Gregory
Research Group: Samuel
anthony.gregory@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0367

Anil Kumar
Research Group: Song
anil.kumar@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0790

Farry Li
Research Group: Hyde
fjli@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0304

Saugata Mahapatra
Research Group: Samuel
mahapatra@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0367

Madeleine Moule
Research Group: Cirillo
moule@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0366

Rudo Simeon
Research Group: Chen
simeon@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.9494

Marie Southerland 
Research Group: Cannon 
southerland@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0867

Catherine Weindel
Research Group: Watson
weindel@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0273

Jialei Xie
Research Group: Skare
jxie@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0355

Gangming Xu 
Research Group: de Figueiredo 
gxu@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0348

Yu Zeng
Research Group: Chen
yzeng@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.9407

Dongmei Zhang 
Research Group: de Figueiredo 
dongmeizhang@medicine.tamhsc.edu
979.436.0348