MCW Microbiology and Molecular Genetics News

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Enduring pain for someone she loves

Nov. 18 - Microbiology and Molecular Genetics graduate student Kristen Westdorp had run two marathons in her life prior to 2016, but the second one was more than eight years in her past, and she was ok with that. She was diving in to her graduate studies, running a casual five miles three times per week, and doing the types of things other students do to fill their time. But then her mother, Cheryl, was diagnosed with Huntington’s disease in 2014 at age 50, and, as can be expected, her perspective began to be shaped and colored by the human devastation taking place before her eyes.

Strikes for Sue bowling event on Oct. 16 to honor Sue Ristow, benefit MCW Cancer Center

Sept. 19 - “Strikes for Sue,” a new bowling fundraiser organized by friends and colleagues of Sue Ristow Zewiske, a beloved and long-time MCW employee who lost her battle with cancer in 2014, will take place Sunday, Oct. 16, at the Root River Center in Franklin.

Paper highlights discovery of mechanism that causes post-transplant complications

Aug. 9 - Studies in the laboratory of Dr. William Drobyski, a physician scientist at the Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Center, have uncovered a novel mechanism that causes graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) within the GI tract. This work, published in the Aug. 8 online issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, reports the discovery of a novel immune cell population that induces inflammation in the colon.

MCW researchers report potential mitochondrial drug therapy for pancreatic cancer

May 26 - Balaraman Kalyanaraman, PhD, chairman and professor of biophysics and Harry R. & Angeline E. Quadracci Professor in Parkinson’s Research; Michael B. Dwinell, PhD, professor of microbiology and molecular genetics; and their international research team published an article in Cancer Research that describes a new redox-sensitive, mitochondrial-energy-sensor-mediated pathway of regression of pancreatic cancer cell growth.

MCW professors investigate therapies for antibiotic resistant bacterial infections

Dec. 16 - Nita H. Salzman, MD, PhD, professor of pediatrics and microbiology and molecular genetics, and an associate director for the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW); and Christopher J. Kristich, PhD, associate professor of microbiology and molecular genetics at MCW investigated therapies to prevent antibiotic resistant infections originating in the gastrointestinal tract. The research focused on Enterococcus faecalis (E. faecalis), a gastrointestinal tract bacterium with the ability to cause a variety of hospital-acquired infections (HAI). The findings of the study were published in Nature.

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