Research

Welcome to the Bollyky Lab Website!

The human body contains vast numbers of bacteria and bacterial viruses called bacteriophages. We seek to understand how interactions between bacteria, bacteriophages, and the human immune system impact our health and disease. Our goals are to gain insights into the pathogenesis of skin and lung infections and to generate novel therapies to improve human health.

One area of active research is the human immune response to bacteria and bacteriophage. Current efforts are focused on understanding how bacteriophage interact with monocytes and other cells of the innate immune system and how phage shape the immune response to commensal and pathogenic bacteria. Much of this work focuses on chronic lung infections in Cystic Fibrosis and diabetic wound infections.

Another area of research involves the phageome in human health and disease. The phageome is the collection of bacteriophage within the human body. We each have within us more bacteriophages than human cells but their impact on human biology is largely unknown. We are developing tools to characterize these phages and to interrogate their contributions to human health and disease.

A third area of active research involves bacteriophage and bacterial pathogenesis. Biofilms are communities of polymers and bacteria that colonize infected tissues. We are interested in how biofilms modulate human immunity, prevent diffusion of antibiotics, and contribute to chronic skin and lung infections. These efforts are focused on the major human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

A fourth area of investigation is the tissue extracellular matrix at sites of injury and infection. In particular, we are interested in the roles that hyaluronan and other extracellular matrix polymers play in innate immunity and immune regulation.

Looking for a lab?  

We are actively recruiting structural biologists, biochemists, immunologists, and microbiologists as graduate students and post-doctoral scholars in the lab. If interested, please contact Dr. Bollyky at pbollyky@stanford.edu

For Stanford Undergraduates interested in joining the lab, we require a minimum commitment of a full year (including full-time work in the lab for at least one summer).

We take high school and undergraduate students through the SSRP program: https://biosciences.stanford.edu/prospective/diversity/ssrp/

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