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Jacky Lu

Carleton College

Jennifer Gaddy lab

I am studying under Dr. Jennifer Gaddy and our lab investigates the interactions of bacterial pathogens with host cells. We focus our studies on the landscape of the bacterial cell surface and the contribution of metal homeostasis to the interaction of host and pathogen cells. My thesis project will focus on the role that innate immune system antimicrobial molecules, such as lactoferrin, play in the host-pathogen dialogue. I hope to understand the antimicrobial and biofilm-altering properties of these molecules against Group B streptococcus (GBS) during pregnancy. In developed counties like the USA, GBS and E. coli account for 70% of early-onset neonatal sepsis of both term and preterm infants. I will be employing cell culture, ex vivo culture from patients, high-resolution electron microscopy, microbiology, and immunology techniques.