The goal of the FPB Lab is to further understand how pathogenic bacteria provoke infection inside hosts against their immune system and to provide the vision to control their virulence in order to prevent bacterial infection. The main targets of our interest are pathogens causing infection via contaminated foods and water. They include Salmonella, E. coli, Staphylococcus, and so on. We identify new virulence factors required for pathogens to thrive against hostile environments and host immune responses, and further search for the strategies to control their contamination in foods and to block their virulence inside hosts. Understanding basic science using high technology, and utilizing our understanding for leading health technology is our approach to investigation.
Genomics, Transcriptomics, and Metagenomics of food-borne pathogens from food resources in South Korea
Human health is continuously threatened by unidentified pathogenic bacteria. Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technology enabled us to acquire accurate bacterial genome information in a short time. Using NGS technology, we apply multi-omic approaches to food-borne pathogens isolated from food resources in South Korea. Multi-omic analyses will provide a plethora of new virulence factors and a bird’s eye view of microbiota present in food resources. All data are valuable to develop a forecast system for food-borne outbreaks.
Defining the roles of Outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) in virulence regulation in Salmonella
OMVs are ubiquitous membranous structures in all Gram-negative bacteria, including pathogens and non-pathogens. Originating from the cell envelope, OMVs are enriched with bacterial antigen molecules that conduct multiple functions as decoys to manipulate the host immune system. We define the cargo proteins within Salmonella OMVs and unravel new roles of OMVs associated with Salmonella virulence regulation. Furthermore, OMVs can be utilized as a delivery vehicle for diverse materials including toxins and drugs. In this context, OMVs merit further investigation for bioengineering.
Rapid diagnostics for the detection of multi-drug resistant bacteria and its application
Antibiotic resistant pathogens become a serious and urgent concern in public health due to an increased incidence of failure with existing antibiotics and the abuse of antibiotics facilitates the occurrence of a variety of Multi-Drug Resistant (MDR) pathogens. As a countermeasure to prevent the dissemination of MDR, a diagnostic method for rapid MDR determination is being devised based on cell staining. The strategy is simplified as below.
Available Lab Positions
Positions for postdoctoral researchers and graduate students are available in the FPB Lab to work on pathogenic bacteria in terms of their virulence regulation and their interaction with environments including hosts. Students who join the FPB Lab can expect to learn a wide range of techniques. Most research projects will include some or all of the contents mentioned bellow:
A variety of molecular tools are used to construct bacterial mutants and to define the regulation mechanisms between virulence factors.
In order to characterize the functions of proteins of our interest, we perform protein purification and use chromatography, mass spectroscopy and activity assay.
We also utilize microscopy (TEM, SEM, and confocal microscopy) to define the niche established by pathogens and their virulence factors inside host cells.
Immunobiology and Cell biology
We routinely assess bacterial virulence during host infection. Bacterial ability to adhere onto or invade into host cells and their survival ability inside phagocytes are evaluated. Interaction between pathogens and hosts is further studied by understanding how immune responses are modulated by pathogens and their virulence factors.
We use a wide range of bioinformatic approaches such as Genomics and transcriptomics to identify virulence factors and to understand their regulation process
Office Paldal Hall 1006
Office Paldal Hall 832