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Mar 28, 2019

Chlamydia trachomatis is the most common sexually transmitted bacterial disease in the U.S. Chlamydia infections in women can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, and in the worst cases ectopic pregnancy or sterility.

C. trachomatis are obligate intracellular bacteria, which has made studying the genetics of virulence particularly difficult.

Dr. Mary Weber is an assistant professor at the University of Iowa who studies C. trachomatis. Dr. Weber talks about some of the difficulties studying this unusual obligate intracellular bacterium, how recent advances are providing hope for new therapeutics and vaccines, why antibiotics are not sufficient to prevent Chlamydia infection, how vaccines against STDs also need to also address the social issues surrounding sexual activity, and how reading “Outbreak” led to her career in microbiology.

The microCase for listeners to solve is about Jim Bagg, a not-very-talented college football player who gets an infection during practice that could be life-threatening.

Karl Klose, Ph.D. (UTSA)
Mary Weber, Ph.D. (University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine)
Janakiram Seshu, Ph.D. (UTSA)
Daniel Montelongo Jaregui (UTSA)