Dr. Kimberly Davis is currently an Assistant Professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology. Her research has focused on bacterial infections, and how interactions between subpopulations of bacterial cells and host phagocytes dictate whether infection progresses or is resolved. Her laboratory utilizes Yersinia pseudotuberculosis and Staphylococcus aureus mouse models of systemic infection to understand how subsets of bacteria cooperate to establish infection within deep tissues, and to determine how immune cells differentially impact the growth rates and antibiotic susceptibility of subpopulations of bacteria. Her laboratory utilizes fluorescent reporter-based approaches to identify distinct subpopulations of bacterial cells, and combinations of microscopy, flow cytometry, genetic, RNA-seq, and proteomic-based approaches to identify critical molecular players in bacterial and host cells. Their long-term goals are to identify promising antimicrobial targets by studying host-pathogen interactions within the host environment, and to harness this knowledge to develop more effective therapeutic approaches to combat bacterial infection.
She received her B.Sc. and M.Sc. from the University of Michigan, and completed her Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania in the laboratory of Dr. Jeffrey Weiser, studying the contribution of host sensing of peptidoglycan to clearance of pneumococcal colonization. She completed her post-doctoral research in the laboratory of Dr. Ralph Isberg at Tufts University, where her research utilized Yersinia pseudotuberculosis mouse models of infection to identify the spatial location of phenotypically distinct bacterial cells.