Escalante Lab, UGA

Jorge Escalante-Semerena, PhD

Jorge Escalante
Postdoc University of Utah-Salt Lake City (1984-1988); J. R. Roth (Advisor)
Postdoc University of Illinois-Urbana (1983-1984); J. E. Cronan, Jr. (Advisor)
Ph.D. Microbiology - University of Illinois-Urbana (1983); R. S. Wolfe (Advisor)
M.S. Microbiology - University of Illinois-Urbana (1979); Ralph S. Wolfe (Advisor)
Q.F.B.  School of Chemistry, National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), Mexico City, Mexico (1977); High Honors
2012-present UGA Foundation Distuinguished Professor, Department of Microbiology, University of Georgia
1998-2012 Professor, Department of Bacteriology, UW-Madison.
1994-1998 Associate Professor, Department of Bacteriology, UW-Madison.
1988-1994 Assistant Professor, Department of Bacteriology, UW-Madison.
1984-1987 Damon Runyon Postdoctoral Fellow
1983-1984 Research Associate, Microbiology Department, University of Illinois-Urbana
  • National Advisory General Medical Sciences Council (Ad hoc; May 2015)
  • UGA Foundation Distinguished Professor in Microbiology (2012)
  • Invited reviewer for the NIH Director’s Pioneer Awards (2012-13)
  • Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (2010)
  • NIH MERIT Award in support of work on B12 biosynthesis (R37-GM40313) (2010-2020)
  • UW-Madison Kellet Mid-Career Faculty Researcher Award (2009)
  • HHMI Teaching Fellow in Classroom Teaching (2007)
  • Highlighted in the ASM ‘The Minority Microbiology Mentor’ (Article)
  • Ira L. Baldwin Professor of Bacteriology (2001-2006).
  • Chair, American Academy of Microbiology Graduate Teaching Award Committee (2009-2011)
  • National Institutes of Health Prokaryotic Cell and Molecular Biology Study Section (2005-2009)
  • Board of Directors, Wind River Meeting on Prokaryotic Biology (2005-present)
  • Member of the Technology Center for Networks and Pathways (TCNP, JHU) (2005-present)
  • 2004 American Society for Microbiology Graduate Teaching Award
  • 2004 TRIO Brenda Pfaehler Award of Excellence in Education
  • American Academy of Microbiology Graduate Teaching Award Committee (2006-2009)
  • American Academy of Microbiology, Subcommittee on Award Nominations (2004-2007)
  • External Reviewer of the Department of Botany and Microbiology, U of OK- Norman (2004).
  • External Reviewer of the Department of Microbiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, U of Idaho-Moscow (2003).
  • Fellow, American Academy of Microbiology (Elected 1999).
  • Dupont Aid-To-Education Scholar (1999-2001).
  • Chair of the Committee on Graduate Education of the American Society for Microbiology (2000-2004).
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Spitzer Excellence in Teaching Award (1999).
  • UW-Madison Hilldale Undergraduate/Faculty Research Award (1998).
  • UW-Madison Hilldale Undergraduate/Faculty Research Award (1991).
  • UW-Madison, 1990 Nominee to the PEW Scholars Program in the Basic Sciences.
  • Damon Runyon Postdoctoral Fellow (1984-1987).
  • Best Student in the School of Chemistry, UNAM, México (1976).
  • American Society for Microbiology
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • American Chemical Society
  • American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Department of Microbiology
University of Georgia
527 Biological Sciences Building
120 Cedar Street

Tel: 706-542-2651
Fax: 706-542-2815

Email: [email protected]

Current Members


Nick Anglin
Graduate Student

[email protected]


Nicholas Athanasatos
Graduate student

[email protected]


Emily Hollander
Undergraduate student

[email protected]


Melissa Mackelprang
Undergraduate student

[email protected]


Lahiru Malalasekara
Graduate Student

[email protected]


Liju Mathew

[email protected]


Regan McCormick
Graduate student

[email protected]


Jessica Will
Research Professional III

[email protected]


Shaun Brinsmade
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 2002-2007)
  • Research Associate (NIH Fellow), A. L. Sonenshein, Department of Microbiology, Tufts University.
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, Georgetown University
  • Website

Nicole R. Buan
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 2000-2005)
  • Research Associate (NIH Fellow), W. Metcalf, Microbiology Department, U of Illinois-Urbana.
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Biochemistry, University of Nebraska-Lincoln (2010-present)
  • Website

Rachel Burckhardt

Jordan Byrne

Flavia Costa

Maris V. Fonseca
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 1994-2001)
  • Research Associate, M. Winkler (Eli Lilly, 2001-2003)
  • Research Scientist, AMGEN Corp. (2003-2006)
  • Research Associate, M. Swanson (2006-present), U of Michigan, Microbiol. & Immunol. Dpt.
  • Monroe County Community College (Monroe, MI) (2011-present)
  • Website

Jeffrey G. Gardner
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 2003-2008)
  • Research Associate, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center, UW-Madison (2008-present).
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Maryland Baltimore County
  • website:

Jane O. Garrity
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 2002-2008)
  • Technology, NUtech Ventures, Lincoln, NE (2008-present)
  • Website

Michael J. Gray
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 2005-2010)
  • Research Associate. U. Jakob, Mol Cell & Dev Biol Dept, U of Michigan (2010-2015).
  • Assistant Professor, Microbiology Department, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Gray lab website

Tracey L. Grimek
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 1997-2003)
  • UW-Madison, School of Pharmacy (2003-2007).

Kristy Hentchel

Alexander Horswill
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 1996-2001)
  • Research Associate (Damon Runyon Fellow), S. Benkovic, Chemistry, Penn State University, (2001-2005).
  • Assistant Professor, University of Iowa (2005-present)
  • Associate Professor, University of Iowa (2009-present)
  • Website

Victoria Jeter

Christofer Kershbael Zepeda

Jeffrey A. Lewis
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 2002-2007)
  • Research Associate (NIH Fellow), A. Gash, Department of Genetics, UW-Madison.
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Arkansas
  • website:

Lori A. Maggio-Hall
Previous graduate student

  • (Ph.D., 1995-2001)
  • Research Associate (NIH Fellow), N. Keller, Plant Pathology, UW-Madison (2002-2005)
  • Research Biologist (du Pont de Nemours & Co., Wilmington, DE) (2005-present)
  • Website

Theodoric Mattes

Paola E. Mera
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 2005-2009)
  • Research Associate, L. Shapiro, Dept Developmental Biology, Stanford School of Medicine (2010-present).
  • Website

Asa Miller

Theodore Moore

George A. O'Toole
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 1988-1994)
  • Research Associate (Damon-Runyon-Walter Winchell Fellow), R. Kolter, Harvard Med. Sch. (1994-1997)
  • Associate Professor of Microbiology, Sch. of Medicine, Dartmouth College (1999-2010)
  • Professor of Microbiology, Sch. of Medicine, Dartmouth College (2010-present)
  • Website

Michele Otte
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 2004-2009)
  • Senior Microbiologist, Dow Chemical Co (2010-present).
  • Website

Sergio Palacios
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 1997-2004)
  • Research Associate, M. Parsek, University of Iowa, Department of Microbiology
  • McKinsey & Co Consulting, Mexico City, Mexico
  • Deceased 9/2008

Anastacia Parks

Christopher Rocco
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 2003-2010)
  • Research Associate. R. Tabita (Department of Microbiology, The Ohio State University (2010-present).

Michelle R. Rondon
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 1988-1995)
  • Research Associate (NIH Fellow), J. Handelsman, Plant Pathology, UW-Madison (1995-1998)
  • Assistant Professor, Microbiology The Ohio State University (1999-2002)
  • Faculty Associate (2007-present)
  • Website

Vincent J. Starai
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 1998-2004)
  • Research Associate (Damon Runyon Fellow), W. Wickner, Biochemistry Department, Dartmouth College.
  • Assistant Professor, Microbiology & Infectious Diseases, University of Georgia-Athens (2009-present)
  • Website

Tara Stuecker

  • (Ph.D., 2007-2012)
  • Research Associate, J. A. Lewis, Department of Biological Sciences, U of Arkansas (2013-present)
  • website:

Sang-Jin Suh
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 1988-1994)
  • Research Associate, S. West, UW-Madison, School of Veterinary Science
  • Research Associate, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Senior Scientist, Dennis Ohman, Dept. of Microbiol. & Immunol., U. of Virginia-Richmond
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Auburn University (2002-2008)
  • Associate Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Auburn University (2008-present)
  • Website

Norbert Tavares

Michael G. Thomas
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 1995-1999)
  • Research Associate (NIH Fellow), C. Walsh, Chemistry, Harvard University (2000- 2002)
  • Assistant Professor, Bacteriology, UW-Madison (2002-2009)
  • Associate Professor, Bacteriology, UW-Madison (2009-present)
  • Website

Ciera Thomas

Jodi Trzebiatowski
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D. 1993-1998)
  • Research Associate (NIH Fellow), F. DeBruijn, Genetics, Michigan State University, 1998-2001)
  • Research Scientist, Wayne State University School of Medicine (2001-2008).
  • Family leave (2008-present)

Allen W. Tsang
Previous Postdoc

  • (Ph.D., 1994-1998)
  • Research Associate (R. Maier, Microbiology, U. of Georgia (1998-2000)
  • Research Associate (S. Ragsdale, Biochemistry, U. of Nebraska (2000-2002)
  • Senior Scientist, Bioinformatics, U of Nebraska (2002-2003)
  • Assistant Research Professor, Microbiology, U of Massachusetts (2003-2006)
  • Assistant Professor, Molecular Medicine Department, School of Medicine, Wake Forest U (2006-present
  • Website

Alex Tucker
Previous Graduate Student

  • Ph.D. (2007-2013)
  • Reseacrh Associate (Dr. Chris Voigt, 2014-present)

Chelsey VanDrisse

Elizabeth Villa

Caitlin Wade

Jesse Woodson
Previous graduate student

  • Ph.D. (2000-2005)
  • NIH Research Fellow (2006-2009)
  • Research Associate (2006-present)

Carmen L. Zayas
Previous Graduate Student

  • (Ph.D., 2000-2007)
  • Pharmacist

© 2024, All Rights Reserved.
Escalante Laboratory, Univ. of Georgia

527 Biological Sciences Building
120 Cedar Street
Athens, GA 30602

Contact Information
Phone: 706-542-2651
E-mail: [email protected]