November 1, 2021
Philip Hardwidge to present Anatomy and Physiology Seminar
Philip Hardwidge, associate director of the National Institutes of Health COBRE Center on Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases at the College of Veterinary Medicine, will present "Intra-bacterial activities of type III secretion system effectors" for the Anatomy and Physiology Seminar at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 2, in the Mara Conference Center, 407 Trotter Hall.
Hardwidge's laboratory is interested in understanding, treating and preventing diarrheal disease caused by bacterial pathogens. They study several virotypes of Escherichia coli that cause diarrhea and malnutrition in humans and livestock, including E. coli O157:H7, non-O157 STEC, and enterotoxigenic E. coli, or ETEC. These pathogens, as well as other enteric bacteria that use contact-dependent secretion systems, represent important threats to food safety, biosecurity and animal health. In many cases, vaccines are not available or are ineffective, and the basic molecular microbiology of the host-pathogen interaction is relatively poorly understood. Additionally, bacterial virulence proteins utilize many molecular mechanisms that are also conserved among viruses of importance to biosecurity.
His research team has discovered several mechanisms by which bacterial proteins subvert the host innate immune system to promote bacterial colonization and transmission. They are directing our knowledge of these proteins and their mammalian targets to innovative studies of metabolic syndromes, autoimmune disorders and cancer. They are also developing proteomic techniques to identify vaccine targets in other organisms.