Position title: Chemistry
- Helen Blackwell
Chemical Probe Development to Elucidate Bacterial Communication Mechanism and Phenotypic Response
Quorum sensing is a cell-to-cell communication system in which bacteria use small molecule and peptide signals to evaluate local cell densities and enact group behaviors such as virulence factor production and biofilm formation. These behaviors can have marked impacts on human health, making them an attractive target for probing and chemical modulation. My work centers around discovering and developing new chemical probes that modulate quorum sensing in Staphylococci and elucidate their roles in biofilm formation and communication in mixed microbial environments.