Alexis McCalla

MSTP in PhD Training

Program: Molecular Microbiology and Microbial Pathogenesis

Current advisor: Mario F. Feldman, PhD

Undergraduate university: University of Oklahoma, 2021

Enrollment year: 2021

Research summary
Large Conjugative Plasmids in Acinetobacter

Acinetobacter bacteria are frequently multidrug resistant and considered to be an urgent antibiotic resistance threat by the CDC. One way in which Acinetobacter acquire antibiotic resistance is through plasmids. A family of large conjugative plasmids was identified in multiple Acinetobacter strains which, in addition to imparting resistance to multiple antibiotics, modify bacterial tropism, replicative ability in macrophages, activity of the type VI secretion system, and other virulence factors. I am studying how these plasmids regulate these and other virulence factors, the conjugative capabilities of these plasmids, and the impact of regulation by the plasmids on their own transmission.

Graduate publications