Interdisciplinary Studies in Virus Research

Description

The members of this interdisciplinary graduate group are interested in viruses and 1) Their roles in disease of microbes, plants, invertebrates, and vertebrates, 2) As models for understanding biological processes, and 3) As tools for use in therapy and nanotechnology. Viruses are ubiquitous in nature and pose a continual serious threat to the health and well-being of their hosts (e.g., HIV, herpes, influenza, avian flu, Ebola, SARS, West Nile virus). Numerous disciplines and faculty with diverse training are required for advancements in our knowledge of how viruses interact with their hosts, how these interactions can lead to disease, how viral disease can be prevented by therapeutic intervention, and how viruses can be used as 'tools' for nanotechnology and for a better understanding molecular and cellular processes as well as disease prevention. The members of this graduate group are dedicated to the use of interdisciplinary approaches in virus research, which span a wide spectrum of disciplines (e.g., structural biology, biophysics, molecular and cell biology, ecology and evolutionary biology, microbiology, pathology, and epidemiology)

One mechanism for how the members of this graduate group interact with one another is through a monthly “Research in Progress” series that gives particularly students the opportunity to discuss their dissertation research to gain experience presenting their findings and to obtain constructive feedback. Second, the participation in a distinguished lecture series (i.e., “Innovations in Virus Research” Lecture Series) exposes members of the graduate group to 3-4 external speakers annually who are invited based upon the innovative nature of their research. Graduate group members also participate in an annual symposium featuring 2 external speakers who are leading researchers in the area virus research along with graduate student oral and poster presentations.

Leadership

The primary contact for this group is Louis Mansky (Diagnostic & Biological Sciences). Additional members of the leadership team are Reuben Harris (Biochemistry, Molecular Biology & Biophysics) and Michael Murtaugh (Veterinary Biomedical Sciences).

Membership

Name

Department

Email

Louis Mansky

Diagnostic & Biological Sciences

mansky@umn.edu

Paul Bohjanen

Microbiology

bohja001@umn.edu

Wade Bresnahan

Microbiology

bresn013@umn.edu

Reuben Harris

Biochemistry, Molecular Biology & Biophysics

rsh@umn.edu

Mark Herberg

Diagnostic & Biological Sciences

mcherzb@umn.edu

James Lokensgard

Medicine

loken006@umn.edu

Hiroshi Matsuo

Biochemistry, Molecular Biology & Biophysics

matsu029@umn.edu

Thomas Molitor

Veterinary Population Sciences

molit001@umn.edu

Joachim Mueller

Physics

muell053@umn.edu

Michael Murtaugh

Veterinary Biomedical Sciences

murta001@umn.edu

Stephen Rice

Microbiology

ricex019@umn.edu

Leslie Schiff

Microbiology

schif002@umn.edu

Nikunj Somia

Genetics, Cell Biology & Development

somia001@umn.edu

Please direct questions about interdisciplinary graduate groups to Vicki Field, Director of The Graduate School’s Office of Interdisciplinary Initiatives, field001@umn.edu or 612-625-6532.