Hualiang Pi, Ph.D.
I grew up in Hunan, China, and received my Ph.D. in Microbiology from Cornell University. My dissertation work in the laboratory of Dr. John Helmann focuses on iron homeostatic systems and stress responses in Bacillus subtilis. In the Skaar lab, I study two-component regulatory systems that are responsible for recognizing and responding to different stress signals in B. anthracis.
Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a Gram-positive, endospore-forming, rod-shaped pathogenic bacterium. Two component regulatory systems (TCSs) are involved in stress sensing and detoxification and both processes are required for infection. Therefore, TCSs are promising antimicrobial targets. Aims of my study are (i) to uncover the unique molecular regulatory mechanisms of BAS5200-5201, heme sensor system HssRS, and HssRS interfacing TCS (HitRS), and (ii) to understand how different TCSs cross-regulate to integrate multiple signals from the environment.