Annual Carleen Collins Lecture

Carleen Collins, Ph.D. (1955-2008)

Carleen M. Collins, Ph.D., prominent microbiologist and expert in microbial pathogenesis, passed away in February 2008.  This is an annual series presented in honor of her memory and accomplishments.

Carleen grew up in Woodland Hills, CA and graduated from Louisville High School in 1973. She received B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees in Microbiology from UCLA, followed by postdoctoral training with Stanley Falkow at Stanford University School of Medicine.  As a Fulbright Scholar, Carleen studied at the University of Umea, Sweden. She rose to full professor at the University of Miami School of Medicine where she taught and established her microbiology research laboratory. In 2002, Carleen moved to Seattle, WA, and joined the Department of Microbiology at the University of Washington.

Carleen's balance between humanity and scientific excellence was an inspiration to all, but especially graduate students and postdoctoral trainees.

The 2020 Lecture will be given by Dr Nina Salama (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center) on 13 October via Zoom.

"Beyond mutation: bacterial carcinogenesis through niche remodeling"

Chronic Helicobacter pylori infection represents the major risk factor for stomach cancer, the third leading cause of cancer death globally. Yet most infected individuals remain asymptomatic, suggesting a more symbiotic relationship of this obligate human stomach microbiome constituent. I will discuss recent murine model studies exploring how H. pylori remodels the stomach tissue environment to simultaneously promote long term bacterial persistence and preneoplastic progression. A second set of experiments investigates the selective pressures on H. pylori imposed by the changing tissue environment revealed through whole genome analysis and extensive phenotyping of a culture collection from a single individual that progressed from duodenal ulcer disease to chronic atrophic gastritis over a 6 year period.


Previous Carleen Collins Lectures

2009  Salmonella as an emerging infection-watching evolution in action

Stanley Falkow, Ph.D., Stanford University

  2010  An ode to diphtheria toxin

John Collier, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School

2011  Expanding the ADP-Ribosyltransferase Paradigm

Craig Roy, Ph.D., Yale University School of Medicine

2012  New concepts in host-pathogen interactions: Lessons from Listeria

Pascal Cossart, Ph.D., The Pasteur Institute

2013  Bacterial manipulations of host protein stability are required for growth

Michael Starnbach, Ph.D, Harvard Medical School

2014  Microbial Community Behavior During Growth in Deep Tissue Sites

Ralph Isberg, Ph.D., Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Tufts University School of Medicine

2015  Genome-wide fitness profiling Pseudomonas aeruginosa – too many surprises, many questions and few answers

Stephen Lory, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School

2016  How Listeria monocytogenes avoids, manipulates and exploits host cell biological processes to promote its intracellular growth

Daniel Portnoy, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley

2017  Role of the Microbiota in Asthma and Malnutrition

B. Brett Finlay, OC, OBC, FRSC, FCAHS, UBC Peter Wall Distinguished Professor, CIFAR Senior Fellow, Michael Smith Laboratories, University of British Columbia

2018  Lessons for Tuberculosis Treatment from the Zebrafish

Lalita Ramakrishnan, PhD, Professor of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, University of Cambridge

             2019  Vibrio cholerae in vivo biology: microbial antagonism, cGAS-like enzymes, and cholera toxin-mediated remodeling of host


             John Mekalanos, PhD, Harvard Medical School