Currently, my primary area of research is how microorganisms can be useful in forensic science. Working with numerous collaborators, we have begun investigating the bacteria associated with stages of human decomposition to determine if these microorganisms can be useful in determining the post-mortem interval.
Historically, my research has focused on understanding the distribution of enteric pathogens (mainly E. coli and Salmonella) and their virulence and antimicrobial resistance factors. I am primarily interested in plasmid mediated antimicrobial resistance and virulence of these bacteria. Areas of interest include characterization of resistance phenotypes and genotypes in Salmonella isolates from human and animal sources, sequencing large plasmids to study their evolution, and determining the prevalence and distribution of these plasmids among Salmonella.
Other areas of research include using the nematode C. elegans as a model organism to study host-pathogen interactions with Salmonella as well as identifying potential vaccine targets for avian pathogenic E. coli.
To learn more about each project, please visit their corresponding page.