PhD Defense by Kelly Leorah Michie

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Summary Sentence: Probing Pseudomonas aeruginosa Physiology During Infection Using –Omics Techniques, Phenotypic Assays and Mouse models

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In partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of

 

Doctor of Philosophy in Biology

In the

School of Biological Sciences

 

Kelly Leorah Michie

 

Will defend her dissertation

 

Probing Pseudomonas aeruginosa Physiology During Infection Using –Omics Techniques, Phenotypic Assays and Mouse models

 

Wednesday, July 8th, 2020

12:00 PM

https://bluejeans.com/515878425/1890

Meeting ID: 515 878 425

Passcode: 1890

 

 

Thesis Advisor:

Dr. Marvin Whiteley

School of Biological Sciences

Georgia Institute of Technology

 

Committee Members:

Dr. Edward Botchwey

School of Biomedical Engineering

Georgia Institute of Technology

 

Dr. Sam Brown

School of Biological Sciences

Georgia Institute of Technology

 

Dr. Greg Gibson

School of Biological Sciences

Georgia Institute of Technology

 

Dr. Joanna B. Goldberg

School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences

Emory University

 

ABSTRACT

 

The opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa causes severe disease in people with compromised immune systems or co-morbidities such as diabetes or cystic fibrosis. Since even intense antibiotic regimens are often ineffective, there is a great need to better understand P. aeruginosa infection biology. Our first research goal was to elucidate the role of glutathione (GSH) biosynthesis for P. aeruginosa during infection. GSH is a major cellular antioxidant that is important for protection from oxidative stress. We found that GSH biosynthesis provides protection against some antimicrobials, such as bleach and ciprofloxacin. We also discovered that GSH biosynthesis provides a modest fitness benefit to P. aeruginosa in a mouse model of acute pneumonia, but not in chronic wound, abscess, and burn wound mouse models. Our second research goal was to characterize the transcriptomic and proteomic signatures of growth rate in P. aeruginosa. Growth rate has significant impacts on cellular physiology, from cell size to stress tolerance. We cultured P. aeruginosa at four different growth rates using a chemostat, and quantified mRNA and protein abundances using RNA-seq and proteomics mass spectrometry, respectively. We observed modest correlations between mRNA and protein expression. We also discovered that there was greater variation in mRNA expression compared to protein expression, and that mRNA expression was more strongly affected by changes in growth rate. We calculated protein-to-mRNA ratios, or conversion factors, which could be used to more accurately predict protein abundance from RNA-seq data. The information presented in this work may be useful for better understanding, and ultimately treating, P. aeruginosa infections.

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Phd Defense
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  • Created By: Tatianna Richardson
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Jul 7, 2020 - 5:02pm
  • Last Updated: Jul 7, 2020 - 5:02pm