Understanding the biological principles that underlie the mechanisms by which infectious agents adapt to and undermine the defense mechanisms of a host organism is critical for the development of therapeutic agents to fight disease. The John Ring LaMontagne Center for Infectious Disease conducts basic and translational research into the molecular mechanisms of pathogenesis of bacterial, viral, parasitic, or fungal infections and strategies for their prophylaxis and therapy.

The LaMontagne Center was established at The University of Texas at Austin in November 2013 as the Center for Infectious Disease (CID) and was renamed just over three years later for scientist and public health champion John Ring LaMontagne.  The LaMontagne Center, while located within the College of Natural Sciences, is composed of highly interdisciplinary researchers spanning at least four colleges: Natural Sciences, Engineering, Pharmacy, and the Dell Medical School.

The mission of the LaMontagne Center for Infectious Disease is to bridge the gap between basic and translational research into microbial and viral pathogenesis. These efforts also include characterizing and predicting the spread of infectious diseases through populations, and supporting programs to define the human and animal responses to challenge by infectious agents and how human genetics impact susceptibility to infection.

The long-term goals of the LaMontagne Center are to promote interdisciplinary infectious disease research throughout the university; establish mentoring programs for undergraduates, graduate students, health professionals, and junior faculty; build ties to local and national medical centers; facilitate the submission of program project and training grants; and translate the results of research into clinical and public health practice.

ICMB Faculty Members:

Maria Croyle
Bryan Davies
Jaquelin Dudley
Lauren Ehrlich
Andrew Ellington
Walter Fast
George Georgiou
Rasika Harshey
Jon Huibregtse
Lauren Meyers
Ian Molineux
Nancy Moran
Howard Ochman
Shelley Payne
Christopher Sullivan
Stephen Trent
Hayley Tucker
Jason Upton

RESEARCH INTERESTS

Treating infection: Treating microbial and polymicrobial infections, addressing resistance to conventional antimicrobials, developing novel therapeutic strategies, and understanding pathogens.

Antimicrobial materials: Surface-attached bacteria (biofilms) and developing materials to prevent colonization in medical devices, reducing biofouling (the accumulation of microorganisms on wetted surfaces).

Exploiting immune response: Novel methods for triggering the immune response, utilizing ‘herd immunity,’ novel antibody products and vaccines.

Predicting infection: Computational modeling to explore how new diseases arise, evolving strategies to combat infection, methods of forecasting infections.