skip to main content

Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology

About Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology

Research in the Department of Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology (MPIM) centers on understanding microbial infection, inflammation, and immune dysregulation with the goal of improving human health. 

Currently, the department houses a number of labs that study bacterial, viral, and fungal pathogens. MPIM labs have extensive expertise in pathogens of the lung (Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Coxiella burnetii, Cryptococcus neoformans, Legionella pneumophila), enteric pathogens (Salmonella enterica, Listeria monocytogenes), reproductive pathogens (Brucella spp., Cytomegalovirus), and the tick-borne, Lyme disease bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. State-of-the-art laboratory and biosafety level 3 facilities enable in-depth molecular and animal studies of high-containment pathogens. Immunology research in the department spans innate and adaptive responses with particular focus on mitochondrial dysfunction in innate responses, post-transcriptional regulation of macrophage activation, and T cell biology as it pertains to autoimmunity and cancer immunotherapy. Significant effort is also dedicated to developing novel biotechnologies and vaccines to protect the public against established infectious agents and emerging threats, including COVID-19.

MPIM faculty are actively funded by a diverse portfolio of extramural grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), Department of Defense (DoD), the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT), and various private foundations.  The MPIM department offers a dynamic and collaborative training environment, with many faculty, postdoctoral associates, and students conducting jointly-funded research and publishing collaborative studies in leading microbiology and immunology journals.


MPIM graduate course descriptions can be viewed through the Texas A&M Course Catalog.

Joint Research

Collaborative research projects have been established with the Departments of Biology, Biochemistry/Biophysics, Veterinary Pathobiology and Veterinary Anatomy and Public Health at Texas A&M University; the intercollegiate programs in genetics, nutrition and virology and the Center for Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases at IBT.