Logo for University of Iowa Health Care This logo represents the University of Iowa Health Care

Microbiology Alumni

The Microbiology Alumni web page are graduates who wish to be listed. Contact Cynthia Hernandez, (319-335-7809) if you have any questions or to update your contact details.

Caetano Antunes, PhD 2007

I am a researcher (principal investigator) at the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, a governmental health research institute in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I lead a team of about 10 people performing basic research in microbiology. Our main interests are chemical signaling and environmental sensing by pathogens, particularly in the context of the human microbiome. 

Jeremiah Athmer, PhD 2017

Phone: 402-952-4168
I am an R&D Scientist at Streck in the new product development – molecular group. My contact information is at the bottom of this email. My job description: New product development with a focus on improving molecular diagnostics for clinical and research laboratories.

Mekhine Baccam, PhD 2001

Phone: 513-627-4842
Alternate Phone: 513-622-4289
Senior Scientist/Toxicologist, Central Product Safety, Global Product Stewardship, The Procter and Gamble Company
I provide human safety support to allow Product Development to test products, investigate new materials/ingredients and introduce new products into the marketplace. I am also a Company expert on respiratory allergy and provide immunology and allergy issue management support for Company toxicologists and other scientists. I also co-lead the respiratory allergy research program for the Company.

Adam Bailin, MS, 2017

Phone: 515.321.8981
Company: doTERRA International/Title: Quality Control Microbiologist II
Description: Ensure safety of products and perform environmental monitoring of areas where product is produced.

Abbey Berkebile, MS, 2015

Work Phone: 402-280-2167
Academic Coordinator & Science, Technology, and Math Specialist, Creighton University, TRiO Student Support Services
I coordinate the Academic Success Program for First Generation/Low Income students in Creighton's TRiO Student Support Services. I also provide professional tutoring in Science and Math and I coach/advise our academically at-risk students. 

Matthew Binnicker, PhD 2004

Associate Professor of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, Mayo Clinic, Division of Clinical Microbiology
Director of Clinical Virology Laboratory

Jennifer Boddicker, PhD 2003

Jennifer is currently a writer and freelance science editor.

Tiffany Borbon, PhD 2018

Tiffany is an MSTP student who returned to Carver College of Medicine (CCOM).

Joel Bozue, PhD 1995

Joel Bozue received his Ph.D. degree in Microbiology from The University of Iowa where he studied how Legionella pneumophila, the causative agent of Legionnaire's disease, survived within the environment by parasitizing amoeba. He next was a National Research Service Award fellow at Children's Research Institute within Children's Hospital at The Ohio State University. His postdoctoral work involved studying endotoxin biosynthesis and hemolysin regulation of Haemophilus ducreyi, the agent responsible for the disease chancroid.

Since 2000, Joel has served as a principal investigator at The United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases in the Bacteriology Division at Fort Detrick, MD. Initially, Joel's primary research focus was to understand the role of the various Bacillus anthracis spore coat and exosporium proteins and what role they play in disease. More recent work is focused on identifying virulence factors which may serve as targets for vaccines or therapeutics of various other pathogenic bacteria, such as Yersinia pestisFrancisella tularensis, and Burkholderia mallei, through the construction of mutant strains. Virulence of these mutant strains is then assessed by in vitroand in vivo assays.

James W. Bracke, PhD 1977

Phone: (612) 508-8144
VP of Oral Health at EPIEN Medical Inc.
Address: 4225 White Bear Parkway, St. Paul MN 55109

Melinda Brindley, PhD 2007

Phone: 706-542-5796
Assistant Professor, Department of Infectious Diseases and Department of Population Health, University of Georgia 

Rachel Brouillette, PhD 2017

Phone: 319-626-8438 x8390
Rachel is a Research Scientist III at Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT) in Coralville, IA

Evan Brutinel, PhD 2008

Phone: 651-737-3957
Senior Microbiologist, 3M Corporate Research Materials Laboratory
As a Senior Microbiologist in the Corporate Labs at 3M my role is to investigate / invent new technologies and materials related to microbial detection, control, and elimination for incorporation into product development activities.

Blake Buchan, PhD 2009

Phone: 414-805-6988
Assistant Professor, Pathology, Medical College of Wisconsin
Associate Director, Clinical Microbiology, Dynacare Laboratory
In this position I aid in medical direction of the microbiology and molecular diagnostics laboratory. This includes selection of appropriate diagnostics assays, serving as a consultant to clinicians to aid in appropriate test selection and interpretation of results, and educating residents in the Pathology program. We also are very active in applied research projects including clinical trials of novel diagnostic platforms and assays.

Jodie Bunzey, PhD 2011

Supervisor, Quality Labs, Quality Control Microbiology, Pfizer, Inc
I am the supervisor of the microbiology method validation and special studies group in the Quality Control Microbiology Department. 

John Cambier, PhD  1975

Phone: 303-724-8663
Distinguished Professor, Department of Immunology & Microbiology, University of Colorado School of Medicine
Professor, Department of Biomedical Research, National Jewish Health
He has received the 1999 and 2010 Distinguished Alumnus Award for Achievement in the College of Medicine and at University of Iowa, respectively.

Ana Castro, MS 2017

My current title is Research Assistant in the Molecular Physiology and Biophysics Department at the University of Iowa and I am working in Dr. Janice Robertson's lab.

Carl Catrenich, PhD 1989

Principal Scientist, Microbiology Capability Group, The Procter & Gamble Company
Current focus areas include microbiological method/assay development and new active identification designed to enhance consumer product quality and performance, in particular, odor mitigation.

Ashley Cooney, PhD 2018

I am a postdoc in Patrick Sinn’s lab in the department of Pediatrics at the University of Iowa.

Allison Christiaansen, PhD 2016

EMD Serono, Scientist
I work in drug development for autoimmune diseases focusing on Lupus treatment.

Manisha Diaz, PhD 2014

Research Scientist, Vircor-IBT Laboratories 

Jayna Ditty, PhD 1999

Associate Professor, Department of Biology, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN
Director, Division of Sciences and Mathematics for the College of Arts and Sciences
I teach majors introductory cellular and molecular biology, general microbiology, and bioinformatics courses with laboratories at a primarily undergraduate institution. In addition, I am active with undergraduate student research focusing currently on chemotaxis to aromatic compounds in Pseudomonas species.

Katherine Doll Kanne, PhD 2016  

I joined a Biotechnology Equity Research Team at an investment bank in New York City and assist in the research of therapeutics as potential investment opportunities.   

Colin Exline, PhD 2009


Phine: 319-331-8970
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/colin-exline-76b45853
Lung Biotechnology/United Therapeutics, Scientist II
Our group, Exponential Biotetherapeutics Engineering, provides R and D support to several of United Therapeutics ventures.  Our primary focus is the creation of a genetic line of pigs for Xenotransplantation to provide a near unlimited supply of organs.  I lead the molecular biology related activities including development of technologies for regulating gene expression, genome engineering, creation of tolerance promoting T cells, and viral vector creation.

Tom Fahlen, PhD 2000

Associate Research Fellow, Advanced Technology, Clorox 
Technical leader for the microbiology groups at Clorox. Aid in new technology evaluation and product development.

Jon Femling, MD, PhD 2007

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of New Mexico. I am a translational physician scientist with my time roughly split half clinical and half research. I have an active lab studying the innate host defense control of Staphylococcus aureus virulence.

Rosana Ferreira, PhD 2007

Assistant Professor, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
Currently my research interests include understanding the role of the skin microbiota in Staphylococci infections.

Cindy Gode, PhD

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/cindy-gode-456223b/

Medical Writer at Physicians' Education Resource
I am currently working as a writer and content expert, mainly in oncology, creating accredited continuing medical education materials for doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers.

Matthew Grunewald, PhD 2019

Matthew is an MSTP student who returned to Carver College of Medicine (CCOM).

Brian Hanzelka, PhD 1999

Senior Research Scientist, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Early research in antibacterial drug discovery and infectious disease therapeutics.

Jodie Haring, PhD 2002

Phone: 701-231-9543
Biological Safety Officer, North Dakota State University
I am responsible for overseeing a comprehensive biological safety program for BSL-1 – BSL-3 work on campus, which includes the development of biosafety policies and procedures for NDSU, performing biosafety laboratory inspections, and providing technical advice to PIs and members of the IBC on biosafety and biosecurity compliance questions. In addition to my current position, I have also been the manager of a Core Facility and a molecular biology technician/lab manager for a group of researchers within an Animal Sciences Department. 

Andrew Hawkins, PhD 2003

andrewchawkins@gmail.com or ahawkins@gevo.com or ahawkins@nararenewables.org
Phone: 626-394-9861
Director of Quantitative Physiology and Fermentation, NARA Gevo, Englewood, Colorado
I lead a team of ~15 people to understand the physiology of commercial iBuOH production strains, modify them as needed, and develop fermentation parameters to scale these strains form 1L to 1,000,000 L! I am an American Society for Microbiology member, and I've joined a few additional groups, like the Brewers Association and the American Society of Brewing Chemists.

Alfa Herrera, PhD 2016

Phone: 309-292-0104
I am currently working as a post-doctorate in the laboratory of Dr. Karla Satchell at Northwestern University. The lab focuses on studying the large MARTX toxins of V. cholera and V. vulnificus and the role of its effector domains in disease. 

Kayley Janssen, PhD 2017

Kayley is a postdoctoral associate at the University of Wisconsin in the Landick Lab. She is studying the coupling of transcription and translation .

Haiyan Jiang, PhD 1998

Principal Scientist, Biotechnology Center of Excellence, Janssen R&D, Johnson & Johnson
Haiyan is leading the Protein Purification Group in Janssen Biotech CoE, focusing on purification and characterization of monoclonal antibodies, target antigens, receptors, alternative scaffolds to develop biological therapeutics.

Jeremiah Johnson, PhD 2011

Twitter: @JohnsonLabUTK
The lab of Dr. Jeremiah Johnson is at the University of Tennessee. He is interested in colonization and pathogensis of Campylobacter jejuni.

Patrick Kelly, PhD 2017

Postdoctoral Scholar at Uniformed Services University in Bethesda, MD

Jacklyn Killpack (Johnson), PhD, 2019

Phone: 320-221-2492

Lauren Kinkead, PhD, 2017

Lauren is an adjunct instructor at Des Moines Area Community College.

Megan Kiedrowski, PhD 2012

Phone: 203-432-5684
I'm currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in Jo Handelsman's laboratory in the Yale University Dept. of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology. I perform research on microbial communities and examine interspecies interactions occurring between microbes that influence biofilm formation and gut persistence.

Jessica King, PhD 2013

Postdoctoral Research Scholar, Department of Microbiology, University of Iowa
I study the role of Staphylococcus aureus superantigens in disease.

Andrew Kondratowicz, PhD 2011

Scientist I, Medical Countermeasures, Tekmira Pharmaceuticals
I will be developing and refining novel therapeutics for the current Ebola epidemic, in addition to any other pandemic viruses that may arise, such as Influenza and Dengue.

Ryan Kustusch, PhD 2009

I am currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at University of Portland, in Portland, OR. University of Portland is a small (~4,000 students) Catholic school. I currently teach Microbiology Lecture (2 sections of 55 students a piece) and a Human Biology class for non-majors (40 students). I also teach Microbiology Laboratory on occasion where each section has 24 students. I have recently started independent research with two undergraduate students. One of my research projects is studying Legionella pneumophila, specifically the effector proteins secreted by its Type Four Secretion System. We are determining what effectors are specifically required to infect protozoa. My other research project is on novel antibiotic discovery. Soil samples are screened for microorganisms that produce antibiotics against known human pathogens. These antibiotics are then purified and further analyzed. I am also teaching at Clark College in Vancouver Washington. I am an Adjunct Instructor at Clark, which is the largest community college in the state of Washington. I teach both Microbiology Lecture and Lab with about 60 students every quarter. I have also taught a class entitled, "Small World Initiative: The Search for Novel Antibiotics." In this class we search for new antibiotics from soil organisms. I would be happy to talk to any students who want to know more about what my job is like.

Nathan Ledeboer, PhD 2005

Associate Professor of Pathology, Medical College of Wisconsin, and Medical Director, Microbiology and Molecular Diagnostics, Froedtert Hospital and Dynacare Laboratories
As the medical director of clinical microbiology and molecular diagnostics, I am responsible for all aspects of diagnostic testing for infectious diseases. I frequently consult with clinicians on development of a differential diagnosis and provide recommendations on diagnostic testing strategies. Once testing is complete I provide interpretation of test results and help to develop treatment strategies with my clinical counterparts.

Nick Lennemann, PhD

I am a postdoctoral fellow in Carolyn Coyne's lab in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh, Center for Microbial Pathogenesis, UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. My research is focused on viral manipulation of the host endomembrane system.

Daniel Lessner, PhD 2003

Website: http://www.uark.edu/ua/flessner/

Associate Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Arkansas
Research focus: Physiology, biochemistry and genetics of methane-producing archaea (methanogens)

Faith Lessner, PhD 2005

Research Scientist, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Arkansas
Research focus: Physiology, biochemistry and genetics of methane-producing archaea (methanogens). My responsibilities are to help train the graduate and undergraduate students, while providing advice with their research, in addition to keeping the lab running smoothly, all while performing my own experiments.

Stephen Lindemann, PhD 2010

Phone: 765-494-9207
I am currently a Assistant Professor, Departments of Food Science and Nutrition Science, Purdue University
My present research is mostly on dietary fiber carbohydrate metabolism in the gut microbiome.

Jessica Lister, MS 2016

listerje01@luther.edu   or jessica.lynn.lister@gmail.com
Research Scientist II at IDT in the Molecular Genetics Division

Martina Maric, PhD 2012

Research Fellow, Institute of Molecular Biology, A*Star, Singapore
I work in a lab that studies nuclear dynamics and architecture.

Joseph Merriman, PhD 2015

 Phone: 314-362-7650
I  am currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Department of Molecular Microbiology at Washington University in St. Louis under the direction of Dr. Michael Caparon. I am currently working on elucidating the connection between central carbon metabolism and group A strep pathogenesis. I am also involved in various teaching opportunities both developing and leading a graduate student course.

Theresa Miller, PhD 2000

theresa.j.miller.ctr@mail.mil or theresa.j.miller@us.army.mil
Phone: 301-619-6875
Principal Scientist-General Dynamics Information Technology, Science Officer-Prostate Cancer Resaerch Program, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, US Army Medical Research Materiel Command
Health Science Officer/Grants Manager: Responsible life cycle management and execution of grants/contracts for several DOD Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) to include breast cancer, ovarian cancer and prostate cancer. Currently oversee management of 605 research awards representing $264 M in appropriate funds. Additionally responsibilities, Grants Manager for the Minority and Underserved Population Program, activities include recruitment of Historically Black Colleges/Universities and Minority Institutions (HBCUMI) and minority investigators for application submission to program announcements/ funding opportunities as well as participation on peer and programmatic review panels. Provide oversight and execution of program evaluation initiatives for Health Disparity Research and Training Awards (HDRA and HDTA).

Edward Mocarski, PhD 1979

Robert W. Woodruff Professor, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Emory University

Sven Moller-Tank, PhD 2014

I am currently a PostDoc in the lab of Aravind Asokan at the University of North Carolina. I am studying the basic biology of Adeno-associated virus and its application as a gene therapy vector.

Caitlin Murphy, PhD 2014

My current position is as Clinical Microbiology Fellow and the University of Nebraska Medical Center. The program is aimed at training for a career in diagnostic microbiology and public health.

Brock Neil, PhD 2009

I am Vice President of Infectious Disease Operations at American Esoteric Laboratories in Memphis, TN. My position has oversight of culture identification and molecular testing for bacteria, viruses, parasites, yeast, molds and mycobacteria from patient specimens. Our laboratory is the largest in the Mid-South United States and my department performs up to 4000 tests per day. I work closely with infection control in a 15 hospital system to ensure proper patient care for inpatient infections.  I am nationally certified to direct clinical diagnostic laboratories. This certification requires 2-4 years post-Ph.D. training and experience, as well as, passage of appropriate national exams. Graduates of the University of Iowa Microbiology program will want to look closely at the American Board of Bioanalysis (ABB) or American Board of Medical Microbiology (ABMM) for national level certification opportunities in microbiology, immunology and molecular diagnostics.

Nancy Nichols, PhD

I am a research microbiologist at the US Dept of Agriculture. The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is the research arm of USDA and has locations throughout the US and a few internationally.

Julie Olson, PhD 1998

Associate Professor, Department of Diagnostic and Biological Sciences, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
I focus most of my effort to directing my research lab in the area of neuroimmunology but I also do teaching, primarily to professional and graduate students.

Matt Olson, PhD 2008

I am currently a senior post-doctoral fellow at Indiana University Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI). I am working on cytokine signaling in allergic inflammation.

Dale Pelletier, PhD 2000

Phone: 865-576-2857
I am currently employed as a research scientist in the Bioscience Division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and my group conducts research on the physiological and genomic characterization of plant-microbe and microbe-microbe interactions.

Jed Rasmussen, PhD 2014

Phone: 435-283-7527
Contact: 150 E College Ave, Ephraim, UT 84627. 
Job/Position:  Snow College, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences
Description:  I teach Human Biology, Cell Biology, Human Physiology, and Interdisciplinary Honors courses and at a two year rural community college.

Federico Rey, PhD 2006

Assistant Professor, Department of Bacteriology, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Area of study: Gut microbiome and cardiovascular disease

Nilda Rodríguez, PhD 2004

Assistant Professor of Biology, University of Northern Iowa 
My job involves about 70% teaching, 25% research and 5% service to the university. My main teaching assignments are Cell Biology, Principles of Microbiology and mentor undergraduate research.

Sarah Skye (Bahr), PhD 2015

I am a postdoctoral fellow in Stan Hazen’s lab in the department of cellular and molecular medicine at the Lerner Research Institute - Cleveland Clinic.

Amy Schaefer, PhD 2002

Senior Research Scientist, University of Washington, Seattle
I supervise daily operations of two academic labs, prepare grant proposals, train and mentor junior researchers, and direct and perform bench research on bacterial communication and plant-microbe interactions.

Patrick Schlievert, PhD 1976

Professor, Chair and Department Executive Officer, Department of Microbiology, University of Iowa
Patrick Schlievert profile

Grant Schulert, MD, PhD 2009


I am currently a Research Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Rheumatology, Cincinnati children’s Hospital Medical Center and Department of Pediatrics, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. This is my professional email and happy to have anyone contact me. I am currently studying innate immune responses in pediatric autoinflammatory diseases, particularly systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis.

Randy Simpson, PhD 2005

Phone:  772-643-1437
Process Engineer - Bioprocess Development, Triton Algae Innovations, San Diego, California
Industrial algal biomass, protein, and porphyrin production process development from pilot to commercial scale including fermentation, downstream recovery, formulations, granulation, and encapsulation systems.

Adam Spaulding, PhD 2013

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Rita Tamayo's lab in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

Juliette Tinker, PhD 2000

Associate Professor, Department of Biological Sciences at Boise State University
I teach Microbiology, Immunology, Vaccinology and Pathogenic Bacteriology as well as perform research in the areas of staphylococcal vaccine development and bacterial enterotoxins as mucosal vaccine adjuvants.

Matthew Thoendel, PhD

After completing my medical training at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN I joined the faculty in the division of Infectious Diseases. My time is split between clinical practice and research, primarily studying metagenomics shotgun sequencing as a new diagnostic tool for identifying pathogens in difficult to diagnose infections.

Nori Ueno, PhD 2011

Technical Sales Specialist, Antibody and Immunoassay Systems (Invitrogen / eBioscience).
I am a technical sales consultant, specializing in flow cytometry, immunoassay, genetic expression experimental design and product support for industrial and academic end users in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Christopher Vakulskas, PhD 2010

Phone: 1-800-328-2661 x8319
Integrated DNA Technologies  - Senior Staff Scientist
I oversee the protein evolution, engineering, and development group in the molecular genetics research and development department.

Jennifer Walker, PhD 2013

Postdoctoral Research Associate, Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis
My work focuses on investigating the molecular mechanisms pathogens employ to overcome the host immune defenses to cause disease.

Jennifer Welch, PhD Fall 2018

Postdoctoral fellow in Jack Stapleton’s lab in the department of Internal Medicine at the University of Iowa. Our lab studies GB virus C (GBV-C) and other flaviviruses replication and immune cell signaling.

Jonathan Willett, PhD 2012

Postdoctoral Fellow-Crosson Lab, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Chicago
My postdoctoral research focuses on using a systematic approach to determining how the two-component signaling pathways of Brucella abortus are involved in sensing and adapting to the host environment. My position provides me the opportunity to split my time between the University of Chicago and Argonne National Lab (where our BSL3 lab is).

Janet Wilson, PhD 2009

Currently a Senior Microbiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Division of Select Agents and Toxins. We regulate and inspect labs that work with bacteria, viruses, and toxins that have the potential to be a severe threat to public health to ensure compliance with federal regulations. The Import Permit Program has the additional responsibility to regulate the importation of any material that contains, or is suspected to contain, material that is infectious to humans.

Amber Vu, PhD 2018

169 Newton 6320 PBDB

Lian-Fai Yee, PhD 2007

Medical Technologist at Carle Foundation Hospital 

Michael Zhang, MD, Phd 2018

Michael graduated from the University of Iowa in the Spring 2018 and is currently at the University of Pittsburgh as as pediactric resident.

Haixia Zhou, PhD, 

Novavax Scientist II  - Haixia studies the immune response to vaccine candidates, mainly focused on RSV and Flu.