The inhabitants of Earth are mostly microbes, and their activities are central to human welfare. Microbes can cause disease, but a properly functioning microbiome is essential for health. Microbes spoil food, but drive many forms of food production. Microbes mediate organismic decay, but catalyze numerous geochemical processes essential for life on Earth.

Research in the Penn Microbiology Department focuses on infectious agents that threaten global health, with an emphasis on understanding molecular mechanisms and developing key new methods. Areas of focus include pathogenic bacteria of the airway and gut, HIV/AIDS, insect- and rodent-borne viruses, herpes viruses, papillomaviruses, emerging infectious diseases and the human microbiome. On the host side, faculty study many areas of immunology related to infection, including innate and adaptive immunity, tumor immunology and vaccine development.


Does the placenta carry germs? Read what Rick Bushman (@BushmanLab, @PennMicro, @Penn) has to say in @NewsHour story by @MoNscience. https://t.co/iVHCaPebdN

“Why are we interested in fossils? They tell a story. This HIV ‘fossil’ is an important piece in the evolutionary puzzle," said Bea Hahn (@PennMicro) in @TheAtlantic by @EdYong209 on how a 1966 tissue sample in a DRC hospital held traces of early #HIV. https://t.co/ZbhxW7RTgL

#ICYMI: I will survive: @PennMicro Sara Cherry found that when a subset of lung epithelial club cells are infected they are able to combat the virus and survive infection via the DNA mismatch repair pathway. @NatureRevMicro, @NIH, @Penn, @PennMedicine, https://t.co/030cTMxxYG

Congratulations to awesome @CAMBUpenn student @TzviPollock on being awarded an NIAID #F31 fellowship! I'm especially proud of Tzvi for his hard work & positive attitude about the process while revising & resubmitting his application 3 times. #perseverance #grit

Come check us out on our brand new website!!


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Prokaryotic Seminar
Seminars will resume in September 2019

Virology Seminar
Seminars will resume in September 2019

Microbiology Seminar
Seminars will resume in September 2019