I am interested in how parasites cope with the challenges associated with living inside a host and the impact of their coping mechanisms on host health. The parasitic lifestyle is wrought with dangers: a host might try to get rid of its parasites by taking an antimicrobial drug or mounting an immune response. Alternatively, a host may be eaten by a predator or encounter harsh environmental conditions and so alter the fate of its parasites, indirectly. What adaptations allow parasites to survive these stresses and how do they arise? What are the consequences of these adaptations for the health of hosts & the environments they live in? On the other hand, how do hosts control the growth of a parasite population that's living within them? By exploring these questions, I hope to explain the rich variety in parasite lifestyles, understand the underlying causes of the symptoms of disease and design new ways to prevent parasites from evolving or expressing traits, such as drug resistance and virulence, that make humans and animals sick. To ask these questions I use experiments, fieldwork and theoretical tools. To find out more about specific projects I have/am working on, see my research page. For my full CV, click here.
I recently set up my own lab in the Department of Microbiology & Molecular Genetics at Michigan State University.
I am excited to be recruiting an independent Research Assistant II to help develop research projects in my lab. For full information please see the posting here and feel free to contact me in advance.
will be recruiting graduate students. Graduate students can enter through either the BioMolecular Sciences Gateway and/or the Ecology, Evolution and Behavior Program. Watch this space or contact me for more information!