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Michael Gilbert, Ph.D


[email protected]


Block Hall 319


I am a biochemist with an interest in the field of parasitology/vector biology. I earned a Bachelors of Science degree in Biological sciences and a minor in chemistry from California State University, Chico where I conducted research on parasitic helminthes and the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. I went on to get my Ph.D. at The University of Montana, Missoula where my dissertation research and one year of postdoctoral experience focused on Myxobolus cerebralis, the myxozoan parasite responsible for whirling disease in salmonid fish. I then did a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, San Diego where I studied Giardia lamblia, a human intestinal parasite. While at UCSD, I was involved in the functional annotation of the Giardia genome and an active participant in the G. lamblia transcriptome project using serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE). I then returned to The University of Montana, Missoula where I began research on Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, which is the most common arthropod-borne disease in the United States and Europe. Shortly before coming to UMW in 2007, I developed the first inducible promoter system available for use in B. burgdorferi, which allowed researchers to artificially regulate gene expression in this pathogenic spirochete. I am currently working to optimize this system in order to regulate B. burgdorferi genes, in vivo, in an experimental tick-mouse infectious cycle. I teach introductory biology classes and general chemistry, as well as biochemistry, genetics and parasitology. Selected Publications: * indicates undergraduate student author Davids, B.J., M. A. Gilbert, Q. Liu, D.S. Reiner, C. Lee*, A. G. McArthur and F. D. Gillin, 2011. An Atypical Proprotein Convertase in Giardia lamblia Differentiation. Molecular and Biochemical Parasitology. 175(2): 169-180. Gilbert, M. A. and W. O. Granath Jr., 2008. Susceptibility of Tubifex tubifex (Annelida: Oligochaeta: Tubificidae) from the Rock Creek Drainage of West Central Montana, U.S.A., to Myxobolus cerebralis (Myxozoa: Myxosporea: Myxobolidae), the Causative Agent of Salmonid Whirling Disease. Comparative Parasitology. 75(1): 92-97. Gilbert, M. A., S. F. Bundle, E. A. Morton* and D. Scott Samuels, 2007. Artificial Regulation of ospC Expression in Borrelia burgdorferi. Molecular Microbiology. 63(4): 1259-1273. Caimano, M. J., R. Iyer, C. H. Eggers, C. Gonzalez, E. A. Morton*, M. A. Gilbert, I. Schwartz and J. D. Radolf, 2007. Analysis of the RpoS regulon in Borrelia burgdorferi in response to mammalian host signals provides insight into RpoS function during the enzootic cycle. Molecular Microbiology. 65(5): 1193-1217. Gilbert, M. A. and W. O. Granath, Jr., 2003. Salmonid Whirling Disease: Life Cycle, Biology and Disease. Journal of Parasitology. 89(4): 658-667.