Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Margaret McFall-Ngai, Ph.D.


Dr. Margaret McFall-Ngai is professor of medical microbiology at the University of Wisconsin (Madison). The Host Microbiome Initiative and the Center for Microbial Systems are pleased to host Dr. McFall-Ngai as she presents a seminar titled "The diversity of host-microbe interactions across the animal kingdom and how biologists are studying these systems". This will be of great interest to anyone curious about the interactions between microbial communities and their animal hosts. Dr. McFall-Ngai's research focuses on host responses to interactions with beneficial microbes. Within this context, her work addresses five major questions:  

  1. How are environmentally rare bacteria harvested from the host's habitat during the onset of a horizontally transmitted symbiosis?
  2. By what mechanisms does the host recognize its specific symbiotic partner(s)?
  3. What are the influences of symbiotic bacteria on the development of the host tissues with which they associate?
  4. How is the symbiont population maintained in balance over the host's lifetime, such that neither does the symbiont overgrow the host nor does the host eliminate the symbiont?
  5. What are the similarities and differences between pathogenic and beneficial animal-bacterial interactions?

 The seminar will take place at 1:00 in Forum Hall (Palmer Commons), Friday, May 01-2015.