Identification and Characterization of Treponema pallidum Proteins that Mediate Bacterial Dissemination Within the Host: A central focus of our research program is determining how the highly invasive syphilis spirochete, Treponema pallidum, is able to rapidly and efficiently invade host tissue. These investigations include analyses of the nature and functional consequence of molecular interactions occurring between T. pallidum and host cells.
Syphilis Vaccine Development: Using a multi-pronged approach our lab is identifying and characterizing vaccine candidates for development of a prophylactic syphilis vaccine
Development of Improved Syphilis Diagnostic Candidates: Through both ongoing research in our lab and collaborative research endeavors we are developing improved diagnostic candidates for antibody-mediated and direct detection of syphilis infections.
Posttranslational Modifications of Outer Membrane Proteins within Spirochetes: Using proteomic methodologies we are investigating the occurrence of posttranslational modifications on outer membrane proteins of Treponema pallidum and Leptospira sp. and the role these modifications play in spirochete persistence within the host.