Tiffany Borbón

Address: 400 EMRB
Phone: (319) 335-6807

Mentor: Mary E. Wilson, MD

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington

Year Entered Into Program: 2014

Research Description

I study inflammasomes in the context of bacterial co-infection and secondary infection of cutaneous leishmaniasis lesions. We hypothesize that inflammasomes will be activated during an infection with Leishmania major in response to bacterial skin flora, either at the time of parasite infection or at the time of ulceration. Consequently, we hypothesize that this element of the host innate immune system will allow better host control of the parasitic infection. My aims are to determine how the phenotype and cellular elements of the inflammatory response are affected by bacterial co-infection with L. major, to study how the inflammatory response affects the adaptive immune response by RNA profiling early and late in co-infection, and to generate a transgenic strain of L. major that expresses flagellin in order to constitutively induce inflammasome responses due to expression of NLRC4.


Jauchem, JR, JA Bernhard, CZ Cerna, TY Lim, RL Seaman, M Tarango. "Effects of a TASER® conducted energy weapon on the circulating red-blood-cell population and other factors in Sus scrofa." Forensic Sci Med Pathol. 2013 Sep;9(3):308-20. doi: 10.1007/s12024-013-9423-9. Epub 2013 Mar 30.

Jauchem JR1, Cerna CZ, Lim TY, Seaman RL. “Exposures of Sus scrofa to a TASER(®) conducted electrical weapon: no effects on 2-dimensional gel electrophoresis patterns of plasma proteins.” Forensic Sci Med Pathol. 2014 Dec;10(4):526-34. doi: 10.1007/s12024-014-9606-z. Epub 2014 Oct 16. 


  • National Institutes of Health (NIH) Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral MD/PhD Fellowship (F30) - 2015-present
  • Science, Mathematics And Research for Transformation (SMART) Scholarship for Service Program from the Department of Defense Awardee 2010-2012
  • Martins Mission Award 2014