Biology Professor Luis Quadri from the School of Natural and Behavioral Sciences has published a paper in the American Society for Microbiology mBio journal on Mycobacterium kansasii—an opportunistic pathogen that causes tuberculosis-like pulmonary disease.

The paper, “Comprehensive essentiality analysis of the Mycobacterium kansasii genome by saturation transposon mutagenesis and deep sequencing,” argues that a comprehensive understanding of M. kansasii biology is critical to facilitate the development of new and more efficacious antimicrobial drugs against M. kansasii infections.

“Drug resistance emergence is a threat to the control of M. kansasii infections, which already requires long-term multidrug courses,” Quadri said. “In this work, we used a genome-wide approach to uncover the genes M. kansasii requires for growth. We also compared the gene essentiality dataset of M. kansasii to those of several other mycobacteria. This analysis highlighted key similarities and differences in the biology of M. kansasii compared to these other species. Altogether, the findings of our gene essentiality analysis and the results of the cross-species comparative genomics analysis represent valuable resources to assist the process of identifying and prioritizing potential M. kansasii drug target candidates and to guide future studies on Mk biology.

Quadri’s laboratory work focuses on the study of the biology of mycobacterial pathogens.  Before joining Brooklyn College in January 2010, Quadri held faculty and head of laboratory/principal investigator positions at Weill Medical College of Cornell University for 10 years.  Before his tenure at Weill Medical College, Quadri received postdoctoral training at Harvard Medical School and earned a Ph.D. degree at the University of Alberta, Canada.