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Feb 8, 2019

Dr. Jeff Miller has been studying Bordetella pertussis, the bacterium that causes whooping cough in humans, for over three decades, and he keeps uncovering novel aspects of the pathogenesis of this organism.

B. pertussis still causes outbreaks of human disease, and Dr. Miller has unraveled in amazing detail the signal transduction system that leads to whooping cough.

Dr. Miller is a professor at the University of California Los Angeles, the director of the California NanoSystems Institute, past-president of the American Society for Microbiology, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Miller talks about diversity generating retroelements in Bordetella bacteriophages and how these allow tropism switching, why we still need to study Bordetella for vaccine research, how science communication is important to combat the anti-vaxx movement, how the NanoSystems Institute aims to push technologies toward translational applications, and how being ASM president (twice!) was a labor of love.

microTalk recorded this discussion with Dr. Miller during a live podcast at the American Society for Microbiology Microbe 2018 meeting in Atlanta, Georgia, and it includes questions from the audience.

The microCase for listeners to solve is about John Deer, who comes down with a life-threatening infection while waterskiing


Karl Klose, Ph.D. (UTSA)
Jeff Miller, Ph.D. (University of California Los Angeles)
Janakiram Seshu, Ph.D. (UTSA)
Jesus Romo, Ph.D. (UTSA)