Dr. Denise Monack is a Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, in the School of Medicine at Stanford University.
The primary focus of her research is to understand the genetic and molecular mechanisms of bacterial pathogenesis. She is particularly intrigued by host-adapted pathogens that have evolved to persist within hosts for long periods of time. She has developed a mouse model to study mechanisms of asymptomatic persistent Salmonella infections. She uses this model to study pathogen-microbiota interactions and mechanisms of disease tolerance that impact host-to-host transmission.
In addition, her laboratory studies the cytosolic recognition of bacteria. Her lab discovered that two innate immune pathways, type I IFN and the inflammasome, are sequentially linked and that this 2-tiered response is a host gauge of the “danger” level before commitment to host cell death. She has received numerous prestigious awards in microbiology, including The Burroughs Wellcome Fund Recipient in Infectious Disease and is an elected Fellow to the American Academy of Microbiology, the world’s oldest and largest life science organization. She is currently the director of the Training Grant for the Program in Microbiology and Immunology at Stanford.