Our lab focus on two major fungal pathogens; (i) Candida albicans, which is the fourth most common cause of systemic nosocomial infections and (ii) Candida auris, an emerging multidrug-resistant fungal pathogen that causes life threatening infections in humans. We aim to understand how commensal bacteria and metabolites interact with host to regulate the colonization and pathogenesis of these two fungal pathogens. We use mouse models, metabolomics and sequencing approaches to identify and validate the microbial and host targets with the long term aim to develop novel therapeutic approaches to prevent and treat fungal infections.
Datta et al, Journal of Fungi 2022)
Fungi and bacteria co-exist in the host. Using conventional and germ free mouse models, we study how fungi and bacteria bidirectionally regulate each other during dysbiosis. Understanding the environmental signals controlling fungal-bacterial interactions will provide strategies to modulate host and microbial signals to treat fungal infections.
Rising incidence of antimicrobial resistance to the FDA-approved antifungal drugs pose increasing threat to treat multi-drug resistant fungal infections. Our lab aims to develop novel therapeutic approaches by (i) Modulating microbiome/metabolites/host defense system and (ii) Develop novel small molecule inhibitors to treat fungal infections (Villa et al. Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters. 2018, Mina et al. Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters. 2019, Weinstock et al. RSC Advances. 2019 and Lawson et al. Bioorganic Chemistry. 2020).