News around the Department

New Opportunities:

Dr. Matthew Woolard has been promoted to Associate Professor with tenure. 

Dr. Martin Sapp has been appointed Mingyu Ding Memorial Professor of Microbiology. The professorship honors a senior doctoral student in Microbiology and Immunology who was working for his PhD in tumor virology, when he died in a tragic automobile accident.

Dr. Andrew Yurochko has been named to the Carroll Feist Endowed Chair of Viral Oncology.


Congratulations to Dr. Stephen Cieply who has successfully defended his doctoral dissertation and is now the newest Ph.D. graduate of the department.

Grants and Awards:

A 5-year Phase III NIH COBRE Center grant of more than $4.82 million was awarded to Dr. Dennis J. O’Callaghan, Boyd Professor and Head of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology to support the Center for Molecular and Tumor Virology. This Phase III award brings the total NIH support for the Center to more than $22.9 million since 2003.  During the Phase III period, this grant will help support the operation of four CMTV Research Cores as well as establish a Pilot Project Grants Program

Dr. Martin Sapp  was recently awarded an R01 grant from the National Cancer Institute to study the early events in human papillomavirus entry. 

Dr. Andrew Yurochko is Co-PI on a recently awarded Program Project Grant from the National Institutes of Health focusing on how HCMV affects signaling pathways in infected hematopoietic progenitor cells.  

Dr. Matthew Woolard was awarded a four-year R01 grant from the National Heart, Blood, and Lung Institute to study the role of macrophage lipid metabolism in cardiovascular disease. 

Dr. Martin Muggeridge was awarded an R03 grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to investigate the function of EBV glycoproteins. 

Dr. Michelle Arnold was awarded a grant from the Louisiana Board of Regents.

Sadie Rice and Samantha Murphy have been awarded Predoctoral Fellowships (Carroll Feist and Ike Muslow, respectively). This brings to 9 the number of our students who are currently supported by fellowships: Brittany Woodby (Carroll Feist Award), Lucile Guion (Carroll Feist Award), Aimee Vozenilek (American Heart Association), Tod Guidry (Carroll Feist Award), Matthew Scott (Carroll Feist Award), Chris Nguyen (Malcom Feist) and Patrick Gellings (Ike Muslow)

Aimee Vozenilek recognized for an outstanding presentation during Graduate Research Day on May 7, 2017.

Patrick Gellings was awarded the Charles S. McCleskey Award for an outstanding oral presentation at the ASM South Central Branch Meeting, Little Rock, AR Oct 19-21, 2017.

Meetings and Presentations:

Dr. Jeremy Kamil has been selected to present the Jamie McNew Lecture at the University of Minnesota, March 7, 2018. This Lecture was created in honor of a child with congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) and has been a prestigeous forum for research on CMV for over a decade. 

Lucile Guion was awarded a travel grant and selected to give a talk at the 4th ASM Conference on Viral Manipulation of Nuclear Processes held in Charleston SC from December 3-6, 2017. 

Dr. Jason Bodily, Dr. Malgorzata Bienkowska-Haba, Brittany Woodby, and Lucile Guion gave oral presentations at the DNA Tumor Virus Conference in Birmingham, UK, July 17-22, 2017.

Christopher Nguyen gave an oral presentation at the 2017 International Herpesvirus Workshop in Ghent, Belgium July 20 - August 2, 2017.

Appointments and Service:

Dr. Matthew Woolard was  chosen as a co-chair for American Heart Association BSc1 Committee

Dr. Andrew Yurochko was selected to serve on the American Heart Association Steering Committee.


Dr. Seong Kim's laboratory recently published papers in Journal of Virology and Virus Research.

Dr. Andrew Yurochko's laboratory recently published Journal of Virology (spotlighted), PNAS, and Annual Reviews of Virology.

Dr. Martin Sapp's laboratory has recently published papers in the Journal of Virology (spotlighted), PlOS Pathogens, and Cellular Microbiology.

Alumni News:

Dr. Tom Nugent (Ph.D.,1994), Director of R&D at Banyan Biomarkers, Inc., helped develop a bood test for concussion that was recently approved by the FDA. 

Dr. Bryan Bellaire (Ph.D., 2001), Associate Professor at Iowa State University, College of Veterinary Medicine, Ames, is now a Registrant of the National Registry of Certified Microbiologists (NRCM).

Dr. Michael L. Grantham (Ph.D., 2006) is now an Assistant Professor at Department of Biology at Missouri Western State University, St. Joseph, MO.

Dr. Bart Tarbet (M.S., 1995) is now a Research Associate Professor at the Utah State University School of Veterinary Medicine.