VK Viswanathan

VK Viswanathan

Professor, Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences
Co-Director, Collaboratory for Anti-infectives and Therapeutics
Professor, BIO5 Institute
Member of the General Faculty
Member of the Graduate Faculty
(520) 626-7687

Work Summary

Around the world, diarrhea kills ninety children every hour. My laboratory uses the latest technology to understand how bacteria cause diarrhea in children. In addition to providing clues for new ways to prevent disease, our research helps us understand how the body maintains good health.

Research Interest

Dr. Viswanathan’s research efforts over the past 12 years have focused on the mechanisms of pathogenesis of the diarrheal disease pathogens enteropathogenic and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EPEC and EHEC). His laboratory characterized EPEC and EHEC virulence factors (specifically those secreted into host cells) and evaluates their effect on host cell physiology including barrier function, cell death pathways, and effects on innate immune responses. His specialization is innate immune signaling by intestinal epithelial cells in vitro and in vivo, and includes the use of cutting-edge technologies such as in vivo phosphoproteomics, and single-cell manipulation during bacterial infection. He also offers a very popular upper-division course in pathogenic bacteriology, and actively mentors undergraduate and graduate students, and post-doctoral fellows at the UA. Keywords: Pathogenic E. coli, Clostridium difficile, infection, host-pathogen interactions