Caroline (Carrie) Harwood
Caroline (Carrie) Harwood received her Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of Massachusetts and completed postdoctoral work at Yale University. She held academic appointments at Cornell University and the University of Iowa before moving to the University of Washington in 2005. Dr. Harwood is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences and the American Academy of Microbiology. She received the Procter & Gamble Award in Applied and Environmental Microbiology in 2010.
In my laboratory we are interested in understanding how bacteria integrate diverse environmental signals and diverse metabolic modules to function at the whole cell level. We rely heavily on genome sequencing, mutant construction and analysis and transcriptome analysis for our work.
A major area of interest is bioenergy production. Our model organism for this is the metabolically versatile photosynthetic bacterium Rhodopseudomonas palustris also known as Rpal. Rpal is an excellent model organism for studying bacterial mechanisms of long-term survival and also for studying regulation of photosynthesis. It stays alive for periods of months in a starved non-growing state as long as it is provided with light. Our goal is to generate foundational knowledge that will improve our ability to use non-growing photosynthetic bacteria as biocatalysts to convert inexpensive feedstock compounds to hydrogen gas or other biofuels. Towards this end we are trying to understand signal transduction cascades involved in the regulation of photosynthesis at low light. We are also working to define genes that are important for long term survival of non-growing cells.
A final more recent interest, developed in collaboration with E. Peter Greenberg in the Department, is in novel quorum sensing signals for bacterial cell-to-cell communication. We are also exploring signaling between bacteria and the plant Populus.
Recent Publications from PubMed
- Clades of Photosynthetic Bacteria Belonging to the Genus Rhodopseudomonas Show Marked Diversity in Light-Harvesting Antenna Complex Gene Composition and Expression.Fixen KR, Oda Y, Harwood CSmSystems. ; 1 1:
- Genome Sequences of Eight Bacterial Species Found in Coculture with the Haptophyte Chrysochromulina tobin.Fixen KR, Starkenburg SR, Hovde BT, Johnson SL, Deodato CR, Daligault HE, Davenport KW, Harwood CS, Cattolico RAGenome announcements. 2016 Nov; 4 6:
- Degradation of cyclic diguanosine monophosphate by a hybrid two-component protein protects Azoarcus sp. strain CIB from toluene toxicity.Martín-Moldes Z, Blázquez B, Baraquet C, Harwood CS, Zamarro MT, Díaz EProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2016 Nov; 113 46: 13174-13179
- Fixen KR, Zheng Y, Harris DF, Shaw S, Yang ZY, Dean DR, Seefeldt LC, Harwood CSProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2016 Sep; 113 36: 10163-7
- A LuxR Homolog in a Cottonwood Tree Endophyte That Activates Gene Expression in Response to a Plant Signal or Specific Peptides.Schaefer AL, Oda Y, Coutinho BG, Pelletier DA, Weiburg J, Venturi V, Greenberg EP, Harwood CSmBio. 2016 Aug; 7 4: