Neisseria gonorrheae, the causative agent of gonorrhea, has become a global health concern because of rapid emergence of resistance to almost all antibiotics available for treatment. Pharyngeal gonococcal infections are problematic as they are difficult to treat and eliminate.
The strict tropism of N. gonorrheae to its human host creates a hurdle to the study of Neisseria-human interactions in animal models. In order to overcome this barrier, we are using Neisseria isolates indigenous to laboratory animals.
My research mainly focuses on understanding asymptomatic carriage and persistence of antibiotic resistant Neisseria in pharynx using a mouse model. I am also interested in identifying different loci that affect fitness in Neisseria species especially genes associated with antibiotic resistance and biofilm formation.