Northwestern Events Calendar


M-I Dept. Seminar Series / Unlocking Antibiotic Persisters During Infection

When: Tuesday, December 6, 2022
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM CT

Where: Simpson Querrey Biomedical Research Center, SQBRC Auditorium, 303 E. Superior Street, Chicago, IL 60611 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Cynthia Naugles   (312) 503-0489

Group: Department of Microbiology-Immunology Seminars/Events

Category: Lectures & Meetings


Title: Unlocking Antibiotic Persisters During Infection


Sophie Helaine, PhD, Associate Professor, Dept Microbiology, Harvard Medical School


Bacterial persistence, characterized by chronic and relapsing infections, is a major threat to human health as these infections cause considerable morbidity and frequently require multiple courses of antibiotics. Such long-lasting infections are caused by a variety of bacterial pathogens including Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Salmonella, Pseudomonas, Staphylococcus aureus and pathogenic Escherichia coli. During infection, Salmonella specifically respond to engulfment by host macrophages by forming high proportions of antibiotic persisters. These persisters escape the combined action of the antibiotic and host immune killing mechanisms for prolonged periods of time by adopting a non-growing state. The molecular mechanisms that govern persister resumption of growth, potentially initiating infection relapse, are not understood. We will discuss what controls regrowth of Salmonella persisters, and how we can leverage this knowledge to resensitize these cells to antibiotics, limiting the risk of relapse.


M.-N. Frances Yap, PhD

Associate Professor

Bacteriology Faculty Search Committee

Dept. of Microbiology-Immunology

Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine


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