New director named for Yale Microbial Sciences Institute at West Campus

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Andrew Goodman has been named to head the Microbial Sciences Institute (MSI) at Yale’s West Campus, which focuses on the inner workings of microbes and their interaction with the environment.

Goodman is the C.N.H. Long Professor of Microbial Pathogenesis. The goal of the Goodman lab is to dissect the mechanisms that commensal gut microbes use to compete, cooperate, and antagonize each other in the gut, and to explore how microbiome variation impacts our response to external perturbations, including pathogenic infection and medical drugs. It is becoming increasingly clear that variation in these communities has important consequences for health.

“New approaches are changing our understanding of the microbial world,” Goodman said, “and we’re gaining a deep appreciation for the impact of microbes on our environment and our health. I’m honored to contribute to Yale’s efforts at this very exciting time for the field.”

Microorganisms are vital for our health and prosperity, playing key roles as symbionts and pathogens, impacting agriculture and climate, and producing many products of medical and industrial value. Recent advances in genomic, cell imaging and computational techniques have revolutionized the broad field of microbial sciences, opening the door to exciting new avenues of research. MSI researchers leverage these technological advances and develop creative multidisciplinary approaches to address fundamental questions in microbial ecology, evolution, cell physiology, cell biology and pathogenesis.

Goodman has been a faculty member of the MSI since its inception in 2011, and was one of the first faculty members hired to Yale’s West Campus. His work has been recognized by the NIH Director’s Innovator award, the Pew and Burroughs Wellcome Foundations, and the White House. He replaces Christine Jacobs-Wagner, who has led the institute through a period of significant growth since 2013.

By Jon Atherton