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K-State Today

March 20, 2023

Rishi Drolia to present Division of Biology Seminar

Submitted by Division of Biology

Rishi Drolia, associate professor at Eastern Kentucky University, will present "From Listeria monocytogenes Invasion of Host Barriers to Next-Generation Bioengineered Probiotics to Prevent Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases" at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, March 23, in 232 Ackert Hall.

The cellular barriers such as the intestinal, blood-brain and placental provide physical and immune defense against microbial infection, yet highly invasive bacterial pathogens such as Listeria monocytogenes have evolved sophisticated mechanisms to breach host barriers. In this talk, Drolia will discuss how L. monocytogenes employs the Listeria adhesion protein to manipulate innate epithelial defenses and induce intestinal barrier dysfunction to promote bacterial translocation. Drolia will highlight how his understanding of host-pathogen interaction led to engineering a next-generation probiotic that excludes pathogens through competitive exclusion, maintaining intestinal epithelial barrier functions and contact-dependent immunomodulation. Additionally, Drolia will focus on his ongoing and future projects on host-pathogen interaction at the blood-brain and blood-placental barriers, bioengineered probiotics in preventing inflammatory bowel diseases, and understanding of dual-species biofilms to improve sanitization strategies in food-processing industries. A deeper understanding of host-pathogen and pathogen-pathogen interactions will pave the path to developing novel preventive and therapeutic strategies for fatal infectious and inflammatory diseases.

If you wish to speak with Drolia during his visit, please contact Sherry Fleming at sdflemin@k-state.edu

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