"Messieurs, c'est les microbes qui auront le dernier mot." (Gentlemen, it is the microbes who will have the last word.)
- Develop academic, clinical, and industrial infrastructure to advance microbiome knowledge and practice.
- Understand the ecological and biological characteristics of the human and environmental microbiomes in both health and disease, and find ways to restore to health.
- Create a core facilities network for stakeholders to facilitate laboratory and analytical operations for microbiome research and applications.
- Increase opportunity, outreach, and synergistic collaborations for faculty and students, industry, with state and national policy makers.
- Partner with communities about their concerns and to educate about microbiome roles in health and disease.
- Create a pathway for career development in microbiome studies.
Intra-College Experience in Creative Research in Experimental and Applied Microbiomics (ICECREAM) Summer 2023
RUMP Innovators in Host-Microbe Interactions in Ecology & Evolution
Center for Emerging Pathogens
Department of Microbiology, Biochemistry, and Molecular Genetics
Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
Research Focus: Systems biology of chronic and infectious diseases. Projects in the lab integrate experimental, computational and machine learning activities. Active projects are currently focused on antibiotics, innate immunity, tuberculosis, COVID-19, and heart failure
RUMP Featured Services -- Nicholas Bessman, PhD
Managed by Animal Care, the gnotobiotic core at Rutgers University provides investigators with the ability to work with germ-free and SPF mice. Currently the core maintains a germ-free colony with C57BL/6 GF mice and Swiss Webster mice to support Rutgers investigators. We offer many technical services that also support gnotobiotic studies.
Our gnotobiotic core provides the following types of technical services to researchers as per their protocol needs:
- Colony management and breeding of germ-free and SPF mice
- Blood collection
- Identification & tissue collection for genotyping - ear punch, tail snip
- Body weight
- Fecal collection
- Sterility testing- food, environment, swabs
- Sterile supplies for experiments-available upon request (ex: sterile gowns, gloves, 1.5ml microcentrifuge tubes, needles & syringes)
- Health monitoring - in house microbiological testing, external diagnostic lab for molecular testing
- Animal husbandry services
- Rederivation offered in the future
- Transfer of germ-free mice in autoclavable cages
- Fecal storage at -80
RUMP Featured Project - Ann Stock, PhD
Regulation of polysaccharide utilization in Bacteroides
Dietary fiber is an important carbon source for some of the most abundant species of the gut microbiota. In Bacteroidetes, gene clusters encoding protein systems necessary for metabolism of specific complex carbohydrates are colocalized into polysaccharide utilization loci, or PULs. Genomes of Bacteroidetes typically encode several dozen different PULs and transcriptional expression of PULs is strictly regulated. PULs comprise the major nutrient acquisition system for Bacteroidetes and are thus key modulators of microbial ecosystems.
Many PULs are regulated by an unusual class of Two-Component Systems (TCSs) known as Hybrid Two-Component Systems, or HTCSs. In HTCSs, the transmembrane sensor histidine kinase and response regulator transcription factor of canonical TCSs are fused into a single polypeptide chain with extracellular ligand sensing, histidine autophosphorylation, phosphoryl transfer, and transcriptional regulation occurring within a single transmembrane dimer.
The Stock lab at the Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine is applying their expertise in structural and functional analysis of bacterial Two-Component System regulation of gene expression to characterize HTCSs in Bacteroides thetaiotamicron. Initial studies are focused on mechanistic characterization of phosphorylation, dimerization and DNA binding using representative recombinant HTCS proteins. Structural characterization is being pursued by X-ray crystallography and cryo-EM. HTCS signaling mechanisms will be further studied in Bacteroides cells to examine how protein localization impacts signaling.