161 episodes

Who is microbiology? Meet the Microbiologist (MTM) introduces you to the people who discover, innovate and advance the field of microbiology.

Go behind-the-scenes of the microbial sciences with experts in virology, bacteriology, mycology, parasitology and more! Share in their passion for microbes and hear about research successes and even a few setbacks in their field.

MTM covers everything from genomics, antibiotic resistance, synthetic biology, emerging infectious diseases, microbial ecology, public health, social equity, host-microbe biology, drug discovery, artificial intelligence, the microbiome and more!

From graduate students to working clinicians and emeritus professors, host, Ashley Hagen, Scientific and Digital Editor at the American Society for Microbiology, highlights professionals in all stages of their careers, gleaning wisdom, career advice and even a bit of mentorship along the way.

Meet the Microbiologist Ashley Hagen, M.S.

    • Science
    • 4.7 • 34 Ratings

Who is microbiology? Meet the Microbiologist (MTM) introduces you to the people who discover, innovate and advance the field of microbiology.

Go behind-the-scenes of the microbial sciences with experts in virology, bacteriology, mycology, parasitology and more! Share in their passion for microbes and hear about research successes and even a few setbacks in their field.

MTM covers everything from genomics, antibiotic resistance, synthetic biology, emerging infectious diseases, microbial ecology, public health, social equity, host-microbe biology, drug discovery, artificial intelligence, the microbiome and more!

From graduate students to working clinicians and emeritus professors, host, Ashley Hagen, Scientific and Digital Editor at the American Society for Microbiology, highlights professionals in all stages of their careers, gleaning wisdom, career advice and even a bit of mentorship along the way.

    Trillion Dollar Microbes Make the Bioeconomy Go Round With Tim Donohue

    Trillion Dollar Microbes Make the Bioeconomy Go Round With Tim Donohue

    Episode Summary Timothy Donohue, Ph.D.—ASM Past President, University of Wisconsin Foundation Fetzer Professor of Bacteriologyand Director of the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC) calls genomics a game-changer when it comes the potential of microbes to create renewable resources and products that can sustain the environment, economy and supply chain around the world. He also shares some exciting new advances in the field and discusses ways his research team is using microorganisms as nanofactories to degrade lignocellulose and make a smorgasbord of products with high economic value.

    Take the MTM listener survey! Ashley's Biggest Takeaways: The bioeconomy can be broadly defined as the use of renewable resources, including microorganisms, to produce valuable goods, products and services. Microbes have the potential to create products that cannot be made by existing synthetic chemistry routes. Using raw, renewable resources to create a circular bioeconomy is beneficial to the environmental footprint, economic footprint and supply chain security around the globe. Links for This Episode: The theme of our Spring 2024 Issue of Microcosm, our flagship member magazine is Microbes and the Bioeconomy: Greasing the Gears of Sustainability, launches this week and features an article based on this MTM conversation. If you are an ASM Member, check back on Wed., June 30 for the newly published content! Not a member? Consider renewing or signing up today, and begin exploring endless potential to boulster your career and network with professionals, like Donohue, in your field.  Get Bioeconomy Policy Updates. Heading to ASM Microbe 2024? Check out this curated itinerary of sessions on the bioeconomy, including those discussing the use of algae for bioproduction and synthetic biology for natural product discovery. Learn more about the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center. MTM listener survey!

    • 49 min
    Rabies: The Diabolical Virus With Many Symptoms and Hosts With Rodney Rohde

    Rabies: The Diabolical Virus With Many Symptoms and Hosts With Rodney Rohde

    Rodney Rohde, Ph.D., Regents’ Professor and Chair of the Medical Laboratory Science Program at Texas State University discusses the many variants, mammalian hosts and diverse neurological symptoms of rabies virus.

    Take the MTM listener survey!
    Ashley’s Biggest Takeaways: Prior to his academic career, Rohde spent a decade as a public health microbiologist and molecular epidemiologist with the Texas Department of State Health Services Bureau of Laboratories and Zoonosis Control Division, and over 30 years researching rabies virus. While at the Department of Health Lab, Rohde worked on virus isolation using what he described as “old school” cell culture techniques, including immunoassays and hemagglutinin inhibition assays. He also identified different variants of rabies virus, using molecular biology techniques. Rohde spent time in the field shepherding oral vaccination programs that, according to passive surveillance methods have completely eliminated canine rabies in Texas. In the last 30-40 years, most rabies deaths in the U.S. have been caused by bats. Approximately 98% of the time rabies is transmitted through the saliva via a bite from a rabid animal. Post-exposure vaccination must take place before symptoms develop in order to be protective. Links for This Episode: Molecular epidemiology of rabies epizootics in Texas. Bat Rabies, Texas, 1996–2000. The Conversation: Rabies is an ancient, unpredictable and potentially fatal disease. Rohde and Charles Rupprecht, 2 rabies researchers, explain how to protect yourself. The One Health of Rabies: It’s Not Just for Animals. MTM listener survey!

    • 55 min
    Increasing Laboratory Capacity for TB Diagnosis With Aureliana Chambal

    Increasing Laboratory Capacity for TB Diagnosis With Aureliana Chambal

    ASM's Young Ambassador, Aureliana Chambal, discusses the high incidence of tuberculosis in Mozambique and how improved surveillance can help block disease transmission in low resource settings. 
    Ashley's Biggest Takeaways: Mozambique is severely impacted by the TB epidemic, with one of the highest incidences in Africa (368 cases/ 100,000 people in the population). Human-adapted members of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) belong to 7 different phylogenetic lineages. These 7 lineages may vary in geographic distribution, and have varying impacts on infection and disease outcome. For decades, 2 reference strains have been used for TB lab research, H37Rv, which Chambal mentions, and Erdman. Both of these belong to TB Lineage 4. According to Chambal, the reference strains that we use for whole genome sequencing (worldwide) may be missing genes that are related the virulence (and/or resistance) of strains that are circulating in a given population and detected in clinical settings. Chambal is endeavoring to employ a new strain to control these analyses and better understand transmission dynamics in the community setting. Featured Quotes:  The Schlumberger Foundation Faculty for the Future Fellowship is one of my proudest accomplishments for the 2023. I applied for this fellowship last year to pursue my Ph.D. It is a program that supports women coming from emerging and developing economies to pursue advanced research qualifications in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. I applied because I was looking to get more skills in microbiology, specifically tuberculosis, to pursue my Ph.D. at Nottingham Trent University.
    Pathway to Microbiology Research My trajectory is different because I have a bachelor’s in veterinary medicine. And during my undergrad, I always had more interest in the lab practice modules or disciplines. For the end of the [bachelor’s] project, I was looking to understand the anthelmintic effectiveness against the gastrointestinal parasites in goats. After I finished this project, I was looking to continue a related project, but unfortunately, I couldn't get work related to that..

    In 2016, I applied for the National Institutes of Health of Mozambique, which is one of the biggest research institutions in my home country. That's when I was selected to work at the north region of Mozambique, specifically at the Nampula Tuberculosis Reference Laboratory. And then I moved to the public health laboratory as well, where I had the opportunity to work in the microbiology section. So, to be honest, my passion for microbiology started when I had the first contact with the TB lab, and then I couldn't separate myself from this area, tuberculosis.

    In 2016, I had the opportunity to receive a mentorship. Our lab, the TB lab of Nampula, received mentorship from the American Society for Microbiology. And we worked with Dr. Shirematee Baboolal; she was the mentor of our lab. The main idea of the program was to get the lab accredited and to build technical capacity in the lab. And to be honest, at the time, I didn't have much experience in lab techniques to detect or diagnosis tuberculosis.

    And I said to Dr. Shirematee, “I don't have much experience in this area, so, I don't know if I will be able to help you to accomplish these goals.” And she said, “If you want to learn, I can teach you, and you can be one of the best in this area.”

    And then we started training with her. It was very interesting. The passion she passed to us about microbiology—and tuberculosis, in particular—was one of the triggers for my passion in this area. So, to be honest, Dr. Shirematee Baboolal was one of the persons that triggered my interest from tuberculosis. So, I have to say thank you to her!
    Tuberculosis Genomic Diversity and Transmission Dynamics Mozambique is one of the higher burden countries of tuberculosis. So, our population is about 33 million people. And the case rate is high, it is approx

    • 35 min
    Good Science, Bad Science and How to Make it Better with Ferric Fang and Arturo Casadevall

    Good Science, Bad Science and How to Make it Better with Ferric Fang and Arturo Casadevall

    The scientific process has the power to deliver a better world and may be the most monumental human achievement. But when it is unethically performed or miscommunicated, it can cause confusion and division. Drs. Fang and Casadevall discuss what is good science, what is bad science and how to make it better.
    Get the book! Thinking about Science: Good Science, Bad Science, and How to Make It Better

    • 59 min
    Using AI to Understand How the Gut-Brain Axis Points to Autism With James Morton

    Using AI to Understand How the Gut-Brain Axis Points to Autism With James Morton

    Dr. James Morton discusses how the gut microbiome modulates brain development and function with specific emphasis on how the gut-brain axis points to functional architecture of autism.
    Watch James' talk from ASM Microbe 2023: Using AI to Glean Insights From Microbiome Data https://youtu.be/hUQls359Spo

    • 44 min
    Atypical Metabolism of Leishmania and Other Parasitic and Free-Living Protists With Michael Ginger

    Atypical Metabolism of Leishmania and Other Parasitic and Free-Living Protists With Michael Ginger

    Dr. Michael ginger, Dean of the School of Applied Sciences in the Department of Biological and geographical Science at the University of Huddersfield, in West Yorkshire, England discusses the atypical metabolism and evolutionary cell biology of parasitic and free-living protists, including Leishmania, Naegleria and  even euglinids.

    • 44 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
34 Ratings

34 Ratings

Craig2372 ,

Great questions and commentary

First-time listener. I thought the questions asked were insightful and the commentary at the end interesting. Plus, the guests are high-profile. Thank you!

mkcheshire ,

Love the podcast

Julie Wolf does an excellent job hosting the show. Very knowledgable.
Mike in Oregon

NotaBearinaHumanSuit ,

Pleasant Microbio Lite

I enjoy this for interesting overviews of topics outside my discipline. My research is biomedical but has very little to do with microbio so this is a nice way to hear about interesting things in the field.

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