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Terry                          Connell

Terry D. Connell PhD

Department of Microbiology and Immunology

Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Adjunct Professor of Oral Biology

Specialty/Research Focus

Allergy and Immunology; Bacterial Pathogenesis; Gene Expression; Genomics and proteomics; Immunology; Infectious Disease; Medical Microbiology; Microbial Pathogenesis; Microbiology; Molecular and Cellular Biology; Molecular Basis of Disease; Molecular genetics; Protein Function and Structure; Signal Transduction

 
Professional Summary:

Research efforts in my laboratory are focused in the fields of immunology and bacterial pathogenesis, two diverse fields of biomedical research for which I have two separate research groups. Projects in both fields are performed by undergraduates, doctoral and master’s degree students, postdoctoral fellows and senior research associates.

One major focus of my laboratory is studying the regulation of mucosal immune responses. We investigate the cellular and molecular events by which Type II heat-labile enterotoxins (HLTs), produced by certain strains of Escherichia coli, modulate immune responses. We have demonstrated that LT-Ilia, LT-IIb and LT-IIc, when co-administered with an antigen, have the capacity to enhance antibody and cellular immune responses to that antigen. Using a variety of immunological and cellular technologies, including flow cytometry, fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) detection, cytokine multiplex analysis, mutagenesis, quantitative Reverse Transcription PCR (qRT-PCR), RNA-sequencing (RNA-Seq) and a variety of transgenic mice, we are investigating the mechanisms by which these immunomodulators productively interact with various immunocompetent cells (T cells, B cells, dendritic cells, macrophages) to induce or suppress cytokine production, costimulatory ligand expression and cellular proliferation. A practical outgrowth of these experiments is the potential to engineer novel recombinant vaccines by genetically fusing antigens from different pathogens to the enterotoxins. Recent experiments have shown that these HLT are lethal for triple-negative breast cancer cells, which has opened a new area of oncological research for the lab.

A second focus of my laboratory is to investigate the molecular mechanisms by which adherent-invasive Escherichia coli (AIEC) induce, exacerbate or prolong the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and Crohn’s disease, two acute and chronic inflammatory diseases of the human gut. In vitro, AIEC strains invade into the cytoplasm of several epithelial cell lines. Using recombinant screening methods and RNA-Seq technologies, we are identifying the genes of AIEC that are required to attach and to invade gut cells.

Education and Training:
  • PhD, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (1989)
  • MS, University of Alabama (1981)
  • BS, University of Alabama (1977)
Employment:
  • Professor, University at Buffalo (2007-present)
  • Associate Professor, University at Buffalo (1999–2007)
  • Assistant Professor, University at Buffalo (1993–1999)
  • Research Associate, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (1992–1993)
  • Instructor, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (1991–1992)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (1989–1992)
  • Laboratory Instructor, University of North Carolina (1984–1985)
  • Research Technician, University of Utah (1981–1983)
  • Teaching Assistant, University of Utah (1980)
  • Laboratory Instructor, University of Alabama (1977–1979)
  • Technical Collaborator, University of Alabama (1976–1977)
See All (11 Total) >
Awards and Honors:
  • Dean‘s Award, University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences (2012)
  • Individual Development Award, United University Professions (2008)
  • Nat'l Inst. of Dental & Craniofacial Research, Independent Scientist Award (2006)
  • Inventor of the Year, Life Sciences (2006)
  • Individual Development Award, United University Professions (2005)
  • University at Buffalo, Recognition as a UB Top 100 Federal Grantee (2005)
  • Certificate of Recognition for Dedication to Students, University at Buffalo (2005)
  • University at Buffalo, Recognition as a UB Top 100 Federal Grantee (2002)
  • Individual Development Award, United University Professions (1999)
  • Term Faculty Development Award, NY State/United University Professions (1995)
  • National Research Service Award Traineeship (1989)
  • Graduate Council Fellowship, University of Alabama (1978)

Research Expertise:
  • Bacterial genetics: Molecular biology underlying the capacity of AIEC strain of Escherichia coli to induce Crohn's Disease and inflammation in the intestinal tract.
  • Bacterial pathogenesis: Pathogenesis of the bacterial heat-labile enterotoxins.
  • Immunobiology: Cellular and molecular biology of immunomodulation modulated by dendritic cells, T cells, B cells, neutrophils, and other immune cells.
  • Molecular and cellular immunology
  • Mucosal immunology: Cellular and molecular events which modulate mucosal immune responses
  • Vaccine development: Use of bacterial heat-labile enterotoxins as adjuvants in the design of new and improved vaccines against pathogens, toxins, and other biological agents.
Grants and Sponsored Research:
  • January 2010–August 2013
    Development of a chimeric protein as a novel multivalent delivery vehicle for inducing protective immune responses to pathogens on mucosal surfaces
    The Oishei Foundation
    Role: Principal Investigator
    $195,120
  • August 2006–July 2011
    Type II enterotoxins as mucosal immunomodulators
    National Institutes of Health
    Role: Principal Investigator
    $1,150,000
  • January 2004–December 2008
    Antigens of Streptococcus mutans in caries immunity
    National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
    Role: Co-Principal Investigator
    $936,812
  • July 2005–November 2007
    Interactions of the E. coli Type II heat-labile enterotoxins with dentritic cells
    Buswell Foundation
    Role: Contributor
    $135,000
  • December 2001–March 2007
    Type II enterotoxins as immunomodulators
    National Institute for Dental & Craniofacial Research
    Role: Principal Investigator
    $487,051
  • April 2001–March 2006
    Type II enterotoxins as mucosal immunomodulators
    National Institute for Dental & Craniofacial Research
    Role: Principal Investigator
    $789,000
  • January 1999–December 2003
    Antigens of Streptococcus mutans in caries
    NICDR
    Role: Co-Principal Investigator
    $900,000
  • June 1996–May 2002
    Extra-cellular secretion in Vibrio cholerae
    NIAID
    Role: Principal Investigator
    $350,000
  • January 2000–January 2001
    Crystallographic investigation of the Vibrio cholerae chitinase: Structural resolution of a bacterial extracellular transport signal
    State University of New York at Buffalo
    Role: Principal Investigator
    $20,000
  • January 1994–January 1999
    Lucille P. Markey Trust
    Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, CDC
    Role: Contributor
    $1,000,000
  • January 1995–January 1997
    A Recombinant Porphyromonas gingivalis vaccine
    National Institute for Dental & Craniofacial Research
    Role: Principal Investigator
    $50,000
  • January 1991–January 1996
    Training Program in Periodontal Disease , NIDR
    National Institute for Dental & Craniofacial Research
    Role: Contributor
    $1,165,033
See All (12 Total) >
Patents:
  • Chimeric antigen-enterotoxin mucosal immunogen A method for inducing immune respnses by recombinant antigen-enterotoxin chimeric mucosal immunogens that contain the A2/B subunits of cholera toxin or the type II heat-labile enterotoxins. These chimeras differentially enhance antibody secretion, cytokine production, and B7-co-stimulation of T cells and CD40L expression of CD4+ T cells. (2005)

Journal Articles:
See All (61 Total) >
Abstracts:
  • Martin, M., Hajishengallis, G., Michael Russell, Metzger, D., Terry Connell, Michalek, S.M.. Purification of the recombinant protein SBR-LT-IIa2/B. J. Dent. Res.. 1998; 77(A).
Books and Book Chapters:
  • Holmes, RK, MJ Jobling and TD Connell. Cholera toxin and related heat-labile enterotoxins of Gram-negative bacteria.. 1995; 8.

Professional Memberships:
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science (1996)
  • American Society for Microbiology (1996)
  • Center for Advanced Molecular Biology and Immunology (1996)
  • Witebsky Center for Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology (1996)
  • Buffalo Collegium of Immunology (1996)
  • UB Microbial Pathogenesis Graduate Group (1996)
  • Oral Immunology/Microbiology Graduate Group (1996)
  • Society for Mucosal Immunology (1996)
  • American Association of Immunologists
  • International Institute of Biomedical Sciences and Technology
Presentations:
  • "Heme acquisition: a heme-regulated virulence determinant of the Bordetellae" Invited seminar, Georgia State University, Georgia State University, Department of Biology (2003)
  • "The role of Type II enterotoxins in mucosal adjuvant stimulation" Invited seminar, GlaxoSmithKline (Belgium), Vaccine group, GlaxoSmithKline, vaccine group (2003)
  • "A comparative analysis of the adjuvant activities of CT and the Escherichia coli Type II enterotoxins (LT-IIa, LT-IIb); a role for ganglioside-binding specificity in immunomodulation" American Society for Microbiology, 102nd General Meeting, American Society for Microbiology (2002)
  • "Inducible expression of heme/hemoglobin uptake by Bordetella spp" Dept. of Biological Sciences and The Howard Hughes Undergraduate Program, The University of Alabama (2001)
  • "Genetic regulation of heme uptake by the bacterial pathogen Bordetella avium" Department of Oral Biology, SUNYAB (2001)
  • "Regulation of heme uptake by Bordetella spp" Eleventh Annual Meeting of the Oral Immunology/Microbiology Research Group (2001)
  • "Utilization of heme by the respiratory pathogen Bordetella pertussis and B. avium is regulated by an ECR sigma factor" Center for Advanced Molecular Biology and Immunology, Faculty Research Exchange Day, SUNYAB (2000)
  • "Heme, hemoglobin, and iron: genetic analyses of an iron uptake system in the upper respiratory pathogens Bordetella avium and Bordetella pertussis" The University of Houston, Department of Biology and Biochemistry (2000)
  • "Bordetella sp. utilize heme as a source of iron for growth: a genetic analysis of the Fe-regulated frg locus" Microbial Pathogenesis Graduate Group, SUNYAB (1999)
  • "Bordetella sp. utilize heme as a source of iron for growth: a genetic analysis of the Fe-regulatef frg locus" University of Texas Medical Branch, Department of Microbiology and Immunology (1999)
  • "Fe-regulation in the respiratory pathogen Bordetella avium" University of Alabama, Dept. of Microbiology (1999)
  • "Secretion of cholera toxin and chitinase by Vibrio cholerae" University of Maryland, Division of Hospital Epidemiology (1998)
  • "The role of Fe in virulence of Bordetella avium" Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration (1998)
  • "The genetics of iron-uptake by the respiratory pathogen Bordetella avium" Department of Biophysical Pharmacology, SUNYAB (1998)
  • "The genetics of iron-uptake by the respiratory pathogen Bordetella avium" Department of Biology, SUNYAB (1998)
  • "Initial studies on iron uptake by the pathogen Bordetella avium" Department of BiochemistrySUNYAB (1997)
  • "Acquisition of iron by Bordetella avium" Center for Microbial Pathogenesis Monthly Seminar Series, SUNYAB (1996)
  • "Extracellular secretion by Vibrio cholerae and Ganglioside-binding of LT-II heat liable enterotoxins" Research Colloquium, Division of Infectious Disease (1996)
  • "Initial Studies of the structural signal for extracellular transport of cholera toxin and other proteins by Vibrio cholerae" 31st US/Japan Joint Conference on Cholera and related Diarrrheal Diseases (1995)
  • "A recombinant Porphyromonas gingivalis vaccine" Fifth Annual Meeting of the Oral Immunology/Microbiology Research Group (1995)
  • "Extracellular secretion of cholera toxin by Vibrio cholerae" Infectious Diseases Research Conference (1994)
  • "Genetics of receptor binding by Type II heat-labile enterotoxins" Microbial Pathogenesis Fall Research Forum of the SUNYAB Microbial Pathogenesis Graduate Group (1993)
  • "Genetic analysis of the ganglioside-binding activity of the Type II heat-labile enterotoxins of Escherichia coli" 27th US/Japan Joint Conference on Cholera and Related Diarrheal Diseases (1991)
See All (23 Total) >
Service Activities:
  • Microbiology; Reviewer (ad hoc); Ad Hoc Reviewer (2003)
  • Microbiology; Reviewer (ad hoc); Ad Hoc Reviewer (2003)
  • President, WNYASM; Western New York Branch of the American Society of Microbiology; President (2002–2003)
  • Immunological Investigations; Ad Hoc Reviewer (2000)
  • Journal of Bacteriology; Ad Hoc Reviewer (1999–2000)
  • BioTechniques; Ad Hoc Reviewer (1999)
  • Gene; Ad Hoc Reviewer (1997)
  • Newsletter Editor, WNYASM; Ad Hoc Reviewer (1994–1996)
  • Infection and Immunity, Editorial Board; Reviewer (1994)
  • Microbial Pathogenesis; Ad Hoc Reviewer (1992)

Clinical Specialties:
Clinical Offices:
Insurance Accepted:

Contact Information

147 Biomedical Research Building
3435 Main St.
Buffalo, NY 14214
Phone: (716) 829-3364
Fax: (716) 829-2158
Email: connell@buffalo.edu


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