Mad about MadTown

Hello from the cheesiest place on Earth! When we last spoke, I was packing all of my possessions into a one-way rental car and blasting off from my happy hometown into parts unknown... Two days on the road later, after an ungodly amount of gas-station coffee guzzled, innumerable sticks of trident gum masticated, and an... Continue Reading →

Is there a doctor in the house?

Distinguished colleagues, it is truly a delight to (digitally) spend time with you today and discuss the diverse consequences of head-on replication-transcription conflicts in Bacillus subtilis. Hopefully you will find my seminar to be intellectually stimulating, and scientifically scintillating. Now let’s begin with a brief overview of the bacterial replication machinery. Wait! Come back, gentle... Continue Reading →

Rodents, radical changes, a requiem for a mustache, and an upcoming road trip

Glorious greetings gentle gerbils! Has everybody heard the latest buzz that gerbils, not rats, likely were responsible for spreading the black plague around Europe? The paper (published in PNAS) looked at historical death records and tree-ring data and determined that climate shifts played a huge role in driving plague outbreaks. The authors saw big fluctuations in plague... Continue Reading →

The graduate students are retreating!

How's it going, human beings? I'm lazing around Seattle on this Sunday afternoon after a fun-filled weekend spent on San Juan Island. Each year the graduate students in my microbiology department spend a weekend together away from the lab at our annual retreat on San Juan Island. We always have a great time getting to know... Continue Reading →


Happy New Year's, neighbors! I hope everyone had a wonderful time celebrating the end of the year of the horse and welcoming the year of the goat. May your champagne have been crisp, your fireworks explosive, and your balls thoroughly dropped. I spent my NYE 2K14 curled up with Michael Pollan's Cooked.  I was looking forward to a... Continue Reading →

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: