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The Cody Lab

The Cody Lab

My research focuses on the molecular mechanisms bacteria use to respond to their surrounding environment, with an emphasis on two-component signal transductionsystems and alternative sigma factors. This includes the transcriptional activation of virulence factors during infection of a human host and the utilization of hydrocarbons as a nutrient source during bioremediation efforts of contaminated environments. More specifically, my research program uses a broad range of microbiology, molecular biology and biochemistry techniques to investigate the regulation of gene expression in the bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The long-term primary goal of my biomedical research is the identification of new drug targets and the development of novel drug therapies. The long-term primary goal of my bioremediation research is the identification of small signaling molecules that significantly enhance the rate by which microorganisms can be used to clean up contaminated sites and reach closure faster.  An additional focus of my research program is the mentorship of undergraduate research assistants. The aims of my research, which are conducive to study in an undergraduate program, provide students the guidance and knowledge needed for success within a variety of graduate programs, including microbiology, immunology, molecular biology, genetics, and biochemistry. Students planning to attend health professions programs, such as medical, nursing, or pharmacy school, gain insight into infectious diseases and microbial pathogenesis.

Publications

Little A.S., Okkotsu Y., Reinhart, A.A., Damron F.H., Barbier M., Barrett B., Oglesby-Sherrouse A.G., Goldberg J.B., Cody W.L., Schurr M.J., Vasil M.L., Schurr M.J. 2018. Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgR phosphorylation status differentially regulates pyocyanin and pyoverdine production. mBio 9:e02318-17.

Prichett, C.L., Little, A.S., Okkotsu, Y., Frisk, A., Cody, W.L., Covey, C.R., and Schurr, M.J. (2015) Expression Analysis of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgZR Two-Component Regulatory System. Journal of Bacteriology. 197: 736- 748

Gillbreath, J., Cody, W.L., Merrell, D.S. and Hendrixson D.R. (2011) Change is good: Variations in common biological mechanisms in the -proteobacteria Campylobacter and Helicobacter. Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews. 75: 84-132.

Cody, W.L., Jones, A.K., Frisk, A., Carterson, A.J., Jackson, D., Wolfgang, M.C. and Schurr, M.J. (2009) Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgZ regulates hydrogen cyanide production in an AlgR dependent manner. Journal of Bacteriology. 191: 2993-3002.

Cody, W.L., Wilson, J.W., Hendrixson, D.R., McIver, K.S., Hagman-Johnson, K., Nickerson, C.A. and Schurr, M.J. (2008) 10% skim milk as a freezing solution enhances the viability of cells stored at -80C. Journal of Microbiological Methods 75: 135-138.

Posters & Other Media


Poster Presentations

Green, V., Wallace, E., and Cody, W.L. Mortality during Pseudomonas aeruginosa chronic infection of Drosophila melanogaster dependent on mating experience of host. 2019. American Society for Microbiology Texas Branch Meeting & Beta Beta Beta (Tri-Beta) Biological Honor Society South Central Regional Convention.

Ostertag, S., Tripplehorn, S., Sandlin, N., Henriquez, S.A., Moore, A., Soper,D.M., Cody, W.L. Coevolution of host-pathogen interactions in a Pseudomonas aeruginosa chronic infection model of Drosophila melanogaster. 2019. Beta Beta Beta (Tri-Beta) Biological Honor Society South Central Regional Convention.

Tripplehorn, S., Sandlin, N., Ostertag, S., Henriquez, S.A., Moore, A., Soper,D.M., Cody, W.L. Coevolution of host-pathogen interactions in a Pseudomonas aeruginosa chronic infection model of Drosophila melanogaster. 2018. American Society for Microbiology Texas Branch Meeting.

Casanova, K., Beckly, C., Torrance, B., Schnoebelen, A., Window, P., Bloemer, A., Steinmiller, E.M.P., Cody, W.L. Antimicrobial Properties of Novel Zinc Oxide Nanoparticles. 2018. American Society for Microbiology Texas Branch Meeting.

Torrance, B.L., Schnoebelen, A.T., Bloemer, A, Window, P., Steinmiller, E.M.P., Cody, W.L. Characterization of novel zinc oxide morphologies and their antimicrobial properties. 2017. American Society for Microbiology Texas Branch Meeting.


Schnoebelen, A.T., Torrance, B.L., Bloemer, A, Window, P., Cody, W.L., Steinmiller, E.M.P. Discoveries in the Antimicrobial Properties of ZnO Plate and Rod Morphologies. 2017. American American Chemical Society National Meeting.


Little, A.S., Okkotsu, Y., Damron, F.H., Barbier, M., Oglesby-Sherrouse, A., Owings, J.P., Barrett, B.C., Cardenas, A., Goldberg., Cody, W.L., Schurr, M.J. Phosphorylated Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgR is Required for Iron Acquisition and Murine Virulence. 2016. American Society for Microbiology Microbe Conference.


Barrett, B.C., Cardenas, A.J., Little, A.S., Schurr, M.J., Cody, W.L. Phosphorylation of Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgR is required for virulence in a Drosophila melanogaster oral feeding infection model. 2016. American Society for Microbiology Texas Branch Meeting.


Little, A.S., Pritchett, C.L., Okkotsu, Y., Covey, C. Cody, W.L. and Schurr, M.J. Transcriptional Anaylsis of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgZR two-component regulatory system. 2013. B-888. American Society for Microbiology General Meeting.


Ribardo, D.A., Boll, J.M., Cody, W.L. and Hendrixson, D.R. Genetic Analysis of Capsular Polysaccharide Production in Campylobacter Jejuni. 2010. United States Department of Agriculture Food and Safety Directors Meeting.


Cody, W.L., Prichett, C.L., Wolfgang, M. and Schurr, M.J. Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgZ utilizes a biofilm specific mechanism to regulate hydrogen cyanide. 2008. B-190. American Society for Microbiology General Meeting.


Prichett, C.L., Frisk, A., Cody, W.L. and Schurr, M.J. Transcriptional regulation of Pseudomonas aeruginosa AlgR. 2008. B-074. American Society for Microbiology General Meeting.


Cody, W.L. and Schurr, M.J. AlgZ/FimS and AlgR coregulate cyanide production in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. 2007. B-471. American Society for Microbiology General Meeting.


Cody, W.L., Fisk, A. and Schurr, M.J. AlgZ/FimS regulate cyanide production in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. 2006. B-245. American Society for Microbiology General Meeting.

Media Appearances

“America's first native Ebola patients in critical condition.” Common Concerns. Interview with Sally Xin Zhang. China Central Television (CCTV). October 3, 2014.

 

Current Lab Members

Ana Henriquez

Jade Pool

Tristan Spain

Victoria Flores

Ruth Bennett

Paola Rodriguez

Courtney Nguyen

Grace Nye

Suzie Hwang

Past Lab Members

Virginia Green (Doctoral Student, Microbiology, Indiana University)

Hannah Safranak (Medical Student, University of Nebraska Medical Center)

Jason Stafford

Sophie Ostertag

Helen Turumble (Masters Students, Theology, University of Dallas)

Eli Wallace (Laboratory Technician)

Jeremy Langsfeld

Cody Meaux (Medical Student, Univresity of Incarnate Word)

Nhu Nguyen

Natalie Sandlin (Doctoral Student, Microbiology, Boston College)

Kaitlin Casanova (Doctoral Student, Infectious Disease and Immunity, Texas A&M)

Sarah Tripplehorn (Doctoral Student, Molecular Biology, University of Pittsburg)

Blake Torrance (Doctoral Student, Immunology, University of Connecticut)

Kathleen Miller (Doctoral Student, Microbiology, University Florida)

Kellan Weston (Doctoral Student, Molecular Cell Biology, Washington University in St. Louis)

Amaris Cardenas (Doctoral Student, Biomedical Sciences, University of Virginia)

Maria Schena (Marketing and Sales Director, Italy)

Teresa Gilstrap

Brandon Barrett

Alexandria Blessing (Forensic Scientist, Florida Department of Law Enforcement)

Phillip Window (Doctoral Student, Biochemistry, Colorado State University)

Christina Andalaro

Claire Sexton

Narine Wandry (Medical Student, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio)

Adam Kaftan (Medical Student, University of Nebraska)

Clarisse Finders (Doctoral Student, Biochemistry, Michigan State University)

Turin Hansen (Registered Nurse)

Nathan McCormick (Scientist, Valspar)

Lab Photos

 Cody Lab Members C/O 2018

ASM 2018

ASM 2018

Cody Lab Members C/O 2017

 Lab Selfie

ASM 2017

 

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News

You Can Do What with a (Spanish) Degree?

His first step was to enroll in physician’s assistant school at Baylor’s College of Medicine, a career trajectory to which he had aspired since his early childhood. Nowadays, Jonathan Cunningham, BA ’17, is dedicated to the vocational pursuit of comfort and healing at MD Anderson in Houston, among the largest cancer treatment centers in the U.S., where he was once a chemotherapy patient himself.

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History Alumnus Heads National Catholic Bioethics Center

During his Rome semester in 1991, Joseph Meaney, BA '93, with his friends (now Father) Kevin Cook, BA '94, and (now Texas State Representative and UD Trustee) Tan Parker, BA '93, attended a private Mass with Pope St. John Paul II. Several weeks earlier, they had hand-delivered a letter to the Swiss Guards outside St. Peter's requesting the Mass and including their contact information; at last, they'd received the phone call instructing them to be at the Bronze Gates at 5 a.m.

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