Understanding how bacteria develop into one of the toughest cell types on Earth
Research in the Rodrigues lab is focused on understanding how bacteria develop into one of the toughest cell types on Earth - Spores.
Spores are dormant, highly-resistant cells that allow bacteria to persist in the environment. Spores are inert to antibiotics and resist common sterilisation methods that kill actively growing bacteria. In the right conditions, spores germinate and generate new populations of bacteria. Many spore-forming bacteria cause life-threatening disease in humans and animals, and contaminate food sources. The Rodrigues lab is interested in the molecular processes that underlie the process of how bacteria develop into spores. Currently, our research examines these processes in the bacterium Bacillus subtilis. We will soon be launching new projects involving the disease-causing, spore-forming bacterium Clostridioides difficile.