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Harnessing virus biodiversity to develop new therapies against multi-drug resistant bacteria

Paul Turner


Dr. Paul Turner

January 25 at 12:20pm in the B.I. Auditorium, Steger Hall

Hosted by Dr. F. Schubot


Dr. Paul Turner received his B.S. from the University of Rochester in Biology, his Ph.D. from Michigan State University, followed by postdoctoral appointments at the NIH, University of Valencia, and University of Maryland. He was recently named the first Elihu Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology in honor of the school’s namesake, Elihu Yale. Dr. Turner is the director of the Graduate Program in Microbiology for Yale University School of Medicine. He has also contributed to diversity initiatives at Yale and in professional organizations.

Increasing prevalence and severity of multi-drug-resistant (MDR) bacterial infections has necessitated novel antibacterial strategies. Ideally, new approaches would target bacterial pathogens while exerting selection for reduced pathogenesis when these bacteria inevitably evolve resistance to therapeutic intervention. Our approach is to harness the vast biodiversity of viruses in the wild, to discover bacteriophages (bacteria-specific viruses) that naturally cause such evolutionary trade-offs.

1. Evolution of mutualism from parasitism in experimental virus populations.

    Shapiro JW, Turner PE.

    Evolution. 2018 Mar;72(3):707-712. doi: 10.1111/evo.13440.

    PMID: 29380361 [PubMed - in process]

2. Dynamics of molecular evolution in RNA virus populations depend on sudden versus gradual environmental change.

    Morley VJ, Turner PE.

    Evolution. 2017 Apr;71(4):872-883. doi: 10.1111/evo.13193. Epub 2017 Feb 14.

    PMID: 28121018 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free PMC Article

3. Evolution in spatially mixed host environments increases divergence for evolved fitness and intrapopulation genetic diversity in RNA viruses.

    Morley VJ, Sistrom M, Usme-Ciro JA, Remold SK, Turner PE.

    Virus Evol. 2016 Jan 20;2(1):vev022. eCollection 2016 Jan.

    PMID: 27774292 [PubMed] Free PMC Article

4. Extending the lifetime of antibiotics: how can phage therapy help?

    Chan BK, Brown K, Kortright KE, Mao S, Turner PE.

    Future Microbiol. 2016 Sep;11:1105-7. doi: 10.2217/fmb-2016-0133. Epub 2016 Aug 22. No abstract available.

    PMID: 27545690 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

5. Reassortment in segmented RNA viruses: mechanisms and outcomes.

    McDonald SM, Nelson MI, Turner PE, Patton JT.

    Nat Rev Microbiol. 2016 Jul;14(7):448-60. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro.2016.46. Epub 2016 May 23. Review.

    PMID: 27211789 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free PMC Article

turner flyer

This seminar will not be livestreamed or recorded.