Magdalene Yh So
- Director, Microbial Pathogenesis Program
- Professor, Immunobiology
- Professor, BIO5 Institute
- Professor, Biochemistry/Molecular Biophysics
- Professor, Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences
- Professor, Genetics - GIDP
- Professor, Molecular and Cellular Biology
My goals are to contribute to the research, teaching and service endeavors at the department and college level. My research goal is to understand the molecular mechanisms regulating bacterial interactions with the host, focusing in particular on pathogenic and commensal species of Neisseria. My role in teaching is to mentor postdoctoral fellows, graduate students and undergraduates with the aim of helping them to develop productive careers in science; to serve on mentoring and thesis committees of graduate students in my lab and in other labs; and to impart my knowledge to graduate students by teaching formal graduate level courses. Regarding service to the UA community, I serve on departmental and college committees, either as a member or as chair of these committees.
No activities entered.
DissertationIMB 920 (Spring 2018)
Honors ThesisBIOC 498H (Spring 2018)
Prins+Molec MechanismsIMB 565 (Spring 2018)
DissertationIMB 920 (Fall 2017)
Honors ThesisBIOC 498H (Fall 2017)
Directed RsrchMCB 492 (Spring 2017)
DissertationIMB 920 (Spring 2017)
Honors Independent StudyMCB 399H (Spring 2017)
Honors ThesisMIC 498H (Spring 2017)
Prins+Molec MechanismsIMB 565 (Spring 2017)
Directed RsrchMCB 492 (Fall 2016)
DissertationIMB 920 (Fall 2016)
Honors Independent StudyMCB 399H (Fall 2016)
Honors ThesisMIC 498H (Fall 2016)
ResearchIMB 900 (Fall 2016)
- Biais, N., Higashi, D. L., So, M. Y., & Ladoux, B. (2012). Techniques to Measure Pilus Retraction Forces. In Methods in Molecular Biology(pp 197-216). Springer Science and Business Media LLC2012. doi:10.1007/978-1-61779-346-2_13
- Weyand, N. J., Wertheimer, A. M., Hobbs, T. R., Sisko, J. L., Taku, N. A., Gregston, L. D., Clary, S., Higashi, D. L., Biais, N., Brown, L. M., Planer, S. L., Legasse, A. W., Axthelm, M. K., Wong, S. W., & So, M. Y. (2013). Neisseria infection of rhesus macaques as a model to study colonization, transmission, persistence, and horizontal gene transfer. PNAS, 110(8).More infoThe strict tropism of many pathogens for man hampers the development of animal models that recapitulate important microbe-host interactions. We developed a rhesus macaque model for studying Neisseria-host interactions using Neisseria species indigenous to the animal. We report that Neisseria are common inhabitants of the rhesus macaque. Neisseria isolated from the rhesus macaque recolonize animals after laboratory passage, persist in the animals for at least 72 d, and are transmitted between animals. Neisseria are naturally competent and acquire genetic markers from each other in vivo, in the absence of selection, within 44 d after colonization. Neisseria macacae encodes orthologs of known or presumed virulence factors of human-adapted Neisseria, as well as current or candidate vaccine antigens. We conclude that the rhesus macaque model will allow studies of the molecular mechanisms of Neisseria colonization, transmission, persistence, and horizontal gene transfer. The model can potentially be developed further for preclinical testing of vaccine candidates.
- Choilean, S. N., Weyand, N. J., Neumann, C., Thomas, J., & So, M. Y. (2011). The dynamic processing of CD46 intracellular domains provides a molecular rheostat for T cell activation.. PLoS One, 16:e16287.
- Higashi, D. L., Biais, N., Weyand, N. J., Agellon, A., Sisko, J. L., Brown, L. M., & So, M. Y. (2011). N. elongata produces type IV pili that mediate interspecies gene transfer with N. gonorrhoeae. PloS One, 6(6).More infoThe genus Neisseria contains at least eight commensal and two pathogenic species. According to the Neisseria phylogenetic tree, commensals are basal to the pathogens. N. elongata, which is at the opposite end of the tree from N. gonorrhoeae, has been observed to be fimbriated, and these fimbriae are correlated with genetic competence in this organism. We tested the hypothesis that the fimbriae of N. elongata are Type IV pili (Tfp), and that Tfp functions in genetic competence. We provide evidence that the N. elongata fimbriae are indeed Tfp. Tfp, as well as the DNA Uptake Sequence (DUS), greatly enhance N. elongata DNA transformation. Tfp allows N. elongata to make intimate contact with N. gonorrhoeae and to mediate the transfer of antibiotic resistance markers between these two species. We conclude that Tfp functional for genetic competence is a trait of a commensal member of the Neisseria genus. Our findings provide a mechanism for the horizontal gene transfer that has been observed among Neisseria species.
- Biais, N., Higashi, D. L., Brujic, J., So, M. Y., & Sheetz, M. P. (2010). Force dependent polymorphism in Type IV pili reveals hidden epitopes.. PNAS, 107, 11358-11363.
- So, M., So, M. Y., Marri, P. R., Paniscus, M., Weyand, N. J., Rendón, M. A., Calton, C. M., Hernández, D. R., Higashi, D. L., Sodergren, E., Weinstock, G. M., & Rounsley, S. D. (2010). Genome sequencing reveals widespread virulence gene exchange among human Neisseria species. PloS One, 5(7).More infoCommensal bacteria comprise a large part of the microbial world, playing important roles in human development, health and disease. However, little is known about the genomic content of commensals or how related they are to their pathogenic counterparts. The genus Neisseria, containing both commensal and pathogenic species, provides an excellent opportunity to study these issues. We undertook a comprehensive sequencing and analysis of human commensal and pathogenic Neisseria genomes. Commensals have an extensive repertoire of virulence alleles, a large fraction of which has been exchanged among Neisseria species. Commensals also have the genetic capacity to donate DNA to, and take up DNA from, other Neisseria. Our findings strongly suggest that commensal Neisseria serve as reservoirs of virulence alleles, and that they engage extensively in genetic exchange.
- Dietrich, M., Mollenkopf, H., So, M. Y., & Friedrich, A. (2009). Pilin regulation in the pilT mutant of Neisseria gonorrhoeae strain MS11.. FEBS Journal, 296, 248–256.
- Higashi, D. D., Zhang, G. H., Biais, N., Myers, L. R., Weyand, N. J., Elliott, D. A., & So, M. Y. (2009). Influence of Type IV pilus retraction on the architecture of the N. gonorrhoeae-infected cell cortex.. Microbiology, 155, 4084-4092.