Welcome to the Department of Microbiology, Immunology & Parasitology.
It's an exciting time to be involved in the study of microorganisms and their interactions with human and animal hosts. Recent advances in microbiology, immunology, and molecular genomics have provided tantalizing glimpses into the biology of these 'bugs'. Important questions are currently being addressed, including how they cause disease and the influence of our own microbiota on the disease process, how the immune system has evolved to deal with the threat that they pose, and how, in turn, microorganisms have evolved complex survival strategies in the face of our immune defenses. Devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is a stark reminder of these issues. SARS-CoV-2 and recent outbreaks of Zika virus in Brazil and Ebola virus in West Africa, along with the ongoing problems of influenza virus, methicillin-resistant 'superbugs' (MRSA), HIV/AIDS, drug-resistant TB, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), and serious fungal infections, among others, constantly remind us of the dynamic nature of our field.
Faculty in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Parasitology (MIP) direct translational research programs in immunology, virology, bacteriology, mycology and parasitology, linking basic and clinical sciences within the Health Sciences Center and with researchers at other campuses. The Department provides a strongly interactive environment that has underpinned the development of several new interdisciplinary research and development programs with funding from the National Institutes of Health, Private Foundations and Industry. Our recent State-funded initiatives include the Louisiana Vaccine Center, established in collaboration with colleagues from Tulane and Xavier University with the aims of promoting vaccine-related research and the development of new vaccines and therapies for infectious disease and promoting linkages with biotechnology. Our faculty have also forged strong ties with related programs at the LSUHSC Stanley Scott Cancer Center, the School of Dentistry and the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine.
Each of these initiatives underpins a dynamic and integrated education program in MIP, that includes mentoring and career development of postgraduate students and postdoctoral trainees from Louisiana, across the United States, and around the globe. Students pursuing PhD or MD/PhD degrees in our graduate program are mentored by an accomplished and dedicated faculty and are supported by state-of-the-art research facilities and core laboratories in genomics, proteomics, bioinformatics, genetic vaccine development, flow cytometry, molecular interaction, and morphology and imaging.
Please contact us if you are interested in further information concerning any aspect of our research and education programs.
Alistair Ramsay, Ph.D.
G. John Buddingh Professor of Microbiology
Department Head, Microbiology, Immunology & Parasitology
Director, Louisiana Vaccine Center