Fungi cause life-threatening infections in immunocompromised patients, especially premature infants, the patient population that Dr. Gale (a neonatologist) cares for. Candida albicans is the predominant cause of fungal infections in infants and is thought to invade via the intestinal tract where it is the predominant colonizing fungus. The overall goal of the Gale laboratory is to understand how fungal communities are established in the intestine during infancy, how the community structure changes over time and is related to disease, and how C. albicans, in particular, invades the intestinal barrier. Ultimately, it is hoped that the research results will allow the development of strategies to 1) promote establishment of “healthy” fungal microbiota that protect the intestine from disease and 2) prevent C. albicans invasion and injury of the intestine.
The Gale laboratory uses molecular (construction of genetic “knockouts” and fungi expressing fluorescent proteins), genomic (next-gen sequencing and qPCR of human fungal communities), and cell biological (microscopy-based assays of human tissue invasion) approaches to understand fungal-host interactions in the intestine.
Selected Publications (Pubmed Search)
Brand AC, Morrison E, Milne S, Gonia S, Gale CA, and Gow NAR. Cdc42 dynamics control directional growth responses. (2014) Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA. 111 (2): 811-816.
†Gonia S, Norton J, Watanaskul L, Pulver R, Morrison E, Brand A, and Gale CA. Rax2 is important for directional establishment of growth sites, but not for reorientation of growth axes, during Candida albicans hyphal morphogenesis. (2013) Fungal Genetics and Biology 56: 116-124.
†Pulver R, Heisel T, Gonia S, Robins R, Norton J, Haynes P, and Gale CA. Rsr1 focuses Cdc42 activity at hyphal tips and promotes maintenance of hyphal development in Candida albicans. (2013) Eukaryotic Cell 12 (4): 482-495.
Falgier C, Kegley S, Podgorski H, Heisel T, Storey K, Bendel CM, and Gale CA. Candida species differ in their interactions with immature human gastrointestinal epithelial cells. (2011) Pediatric Research 69 (5): 384-389.
*Brand A, Vacharaska A, Bendel C.M., Norton J, Haynes P, Henry-Stanley M, Wells C, Ross K, Gow N.A.R., and Gale C.A. An internal polarity landmark is also important for externally-induced hyphal behaviors in Candida albicans. (2008) Eukaryotic Cell 7: 712-720.
Hausauer D, Gerami-Nejad M, Kistler-Anderson C, and Gale C. Hyphal guidance and invasive growth in Candida albicans require the Ras-like GTPase Rsr1p and its GTPase activating protein Bud2p. (2005) Eukaryotic Cell 4: 1273-1286.
*Gerami-Nejad M, Hausauer D, Berman J, Gale C. Cassettes for the PCR-mediated construction of regulatable alleles in Candida albicans. (2004) Yeast 21: 429-436.
*Gerami-Nejad M, Berman J, Gale C. Cassettes for PCR-mediated construction of green, yellow, and cyan fluorescent protein fusions in Candida albicans. (2001) Yeast 18:859-864.
*articles designated as “Highlights in Candida biology” (out of a total of 272 citations) on the Candida Genome Database (CGD) website (http://www.candidagenome.org/TopicBiblios.shtml)
†microscopy image taken by the Gale Laboratory featured on the cover of the journal issue