South Texas Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases


Administrative Core  |  Faculty  |  Staff

Administrative Core

Karl Klose


Karl Klose, Ph.D.
Professor of Microbiology

Office: BSE 3.252
Phone: (210) 458-6140

Lab: BSE 3.252
Lab Phone: (210) 458-6141

Research Interests: Dr. Klose’s lab is interested in bacterial pathogenesis – how bacteria cause disease. The lab is researching Vibrio cholerae, the bacterium that causes cholera, and Francisella tularensis, the bacterium that causes tularemia.

Jose Lopez-Ribot

Associate Director

Jose Lopez-Ribot, Pharm.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Microbiology

Office: MBT 1.246
Phone: (210) 458-7022

Lab: MBT 1.246
Lab Phone: (210) 458-7023

Research Interests: Dr. Lopez-Ribot's lab studies fungal infections, with an emphasis on the opportunistic pathogenic fungus Candida albicans. Main projects in the lab deal with targeting virulence factors for the development of novel antifungal agents.

Neal Guentzel


Neal Guentzel, Ph.D.
Professor of Microbiology

Office: BSE 3.204
Phone: (210) 458-4473

Lab: BSE 3.204
Lab Phone: (210) 458-4473

Research Interests: Dr. Guentzel’s research focuses on microbial pathogenesis and immunity to infectious diseases. His lab is studying the mechanisms of virulence used by various microorganisms, especially in the gastrointestinal tract.


Hamid Badali
Hamid Badali, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Research

Office: -
Phone: (210) 458-7545

Lab: -
Lab Phone: -

Research Interests: Dr. Badali's research focuses on antifungal screening and drug development, Candida albicans and Candida auris biofilm, development of nano drug delivery for fungal infection, mechanisms of antifungal resistance, medical mycology, and nanoparticulate of antifungal drug delivery.

Astrid Cardona
Astrid Cardona, Ph.D.
Professor of Immunology

Office: MBT 1.216
Phone: (210) 458-5071

Lab: MBT 1.212
Lab Phone: (210) 458-5029

Research Interests: Dr. Cardona's research is focused on understanding the mechanisms of tissue damage in Multiple Sclerosis and Diabetic retinopathy. Her laboratory focuses on the functional interactions between immune cells, microglia, neurons and blood vessels.

James Chambers
James Chambers, Ph.D.
Professor of Biochemistry

Office: BSE 3.224
Phone: (210) 458-5477

Lab: BSE 3.224
Lab Phone: (210) 458-5477

Research Interests: Dr. Chambers’ research interests focus on biosensors, influenza epidemiology, and Francisella tularensis. He seeks to understand the processes that make it possible to develop new and novel treatment regimes, with special regard to treatments for illness associated with F. tularensis.

Mark Eppinger
Mark Eppinger, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Microbial Genomics

Office: FLN 4.02.34
Phone: (210) 458-6276

Lab: BSE 3.404
Lab Phone: -

Research Interests: The focus of Dr. Eppinger's research is the application of microbial genomics to address fundamental questions in emerging infectious diseases research. Current interests are directed towards large-scale sequencing and phylogenomic studies investigating major public health threats.

Thomas Forsthuber
Thomas Forsthuber, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Immunology

Office: BSE 3.254
Phone: (210) 458-5760

Lab: BSE 3.250
Lab Phone: (210) 458-5499

Research Interests: Dr. Forsthuber’s lab researches the role of the immune system in human diseases, in particular on T lymphocytes in autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, and in infectious diseases.

Kirsten Hanson
Kirsten Hanson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Biology

Office: BSE 1.646
Phone: (210) 458-5904

Lab: BSE 3.408
Lab Phone: (210) 458-5221

Research Interests: Research in Dr. Hanson’s lab focuses on the cellular and developmental biology of Plasmodium parasites and host-parasite interactions, particularly in the asymptomatic liver stage of the parasite lifecycle.

Hans Heidner
Hans W. Heidner, Ph.D.
Professor of Virology

Office: BSB 2.03.34
Phone: (210) 458-5767

Lab: BSB 2.03.34
Lab Phone: (210) 458-5767

Research Interests: Dr. Heidner’s research focuses on the replication of alphaviruses in vertebrate and mosquito cells, as well as the use of alphavirus-based vectors for cell targeting and vaccine applications and development.

Chiung-Yu Hung
Chiung-Yu Hung, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Microbiology and Immunology

Office: MBT 1.242
Phone: (210) 458-7018

Lab: MBT 1.238
Lab Phone: (210) 458-7019

Research Interests: Dr. Hung’s research focuses on characterization of protective immunity and vaccine development, discovery of novel fungal chemotherapies, and development of rapid screening methods for drug discovery.

Soo Chan Lee
Soo Chan Lee, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Biology

Office: -
Phone: (210) 458-5398

Lab: -
Lab Phone: (210) 458-5398

Research Interests: Dr. Lee's lab focuses on medical mycology and fungal pathogenesis, primarily mucormycosis, an emerging fungal infection that poses serious threats to public health.

Rahul Raghavan
Rahul Raghavan, Ph.D.
Associate Professor

Office: -
Phone: -

Lab: -
Lab Phone: -

Research Interests: Research in the Raghavan lab combines molecular microbiology with evolutionary genomics to investigate how changes in proteins and non-coding RNAs facilitate bacterial adaptation.

Jesus Romo
Jesús A. Romo, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor

Office: -
Phone: -

Lab: -
Lab Phone: -

Research Interests: Dr. Romo’s research is focused on characterizing the role and impact of fungal colonizers in the mammalian gastrointestinal tract during infection by bacterial pathogens. Of particular interest is trans-kingdom interactions between fungi, bacteria, and their host.

Stephen Saville
Stephen Saville, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Genetics

Office: MBT 1.228
Phone: (210) 458-6197

Lab: MBT 1.228
Lab Phone: (210) 458-6197

Research Interests: Dr. Saville’s lab focuses on the genetic regulation of Candida albicans cell shape and determining how morphological changes impact the ability of the fungus to cause disease in both mucosal and disseminated infection models.

Janakiram Seshu
Janakiram Seshu, Ph.D.
Professor of Bacterial Pathogenesis

Office: BSE 3.230
Phone: (210) 458-6578

Lab: BSE 3.230
Lab Phone: (210) 458-6578

Research Interests: Research in Dr. Seshu’s lab deals with bacterial pathogenesis, Borrelia burgdorferi (the causative agent of Lyme disease), Coxiella burnetii (the causative agent of Q fever), and the biology of Spirochetes.

Yufeng Wang
Yufeng Wang, Ph.D.
Professor of Bioinformatics and Computational Biology

Office: FLN 3.01.20
Phone: (210) 458-6492

Lab: 3.01.20
Lab Phone: (210) 458-6493

Research Interests: Research in Dr. Wang's lab focuses on the comparative genomics, molecular evolution, and systems biology of gene families.

Jieh-Juen Yu
Jieh-Juen Yu, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Research

Office: BSE 3.232
Phone: (210) 458-5210

Lab: BSE 3.232
Lab Phone: (210) 458-5210

Research Interests: Dr. Yu’s research interests are in the development of vaccines against respiratory bacterial pathogens and the elucidation of host immune responses to bacterial infection.

Guoquan Zhang
Guoquan Zhang, DVM, Ph.D.

Office: -
Phone: (210) 458-7020

Lab: -
Lab Phone: (210) 458-7020

Research Interests: Dr. Zhang’s research focuses on understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of protective immunity against aerosolized intracellular bacterial pathogens and developing novel approaches for discovery of safe, effective vaccines and immunotherapeutic strategies against aerosol-transmitted intracellular bacterial pathogens.

Yan Zhang
Yan Zhang, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Research

Office: -
Phone: (210) 458-7020

Lab: -
Lab Phone: (210) 458-7020

Research Interests: Dr. Zhang’s research interests involve the mechanisms of host cell-microbial pathogen interaction and developing vaccines against cancer and infectious diseases.


Sara Eppinger, MS
Laboratory Manager - Mark Eppinger Lab

Lab: BSE 3.410

Phone: -

Ildiko Forsthuber
Research Scientist Associate I - Thomas Forsthuber Lab

Lab: BSE 3.250

Phone: (210) 458-5499