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Michelle King

My research revolves around the characterization of a Ca2+-regulated putative phytase CarP. We hypothesize that this protein plays a major role in Ca2+-dependent virulence and host-pathogen interactions of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. We have previously shown that CarP is positively regulated by the Ca2+ induced two-component system CarSR. CarP is required for Ca2+tolerance and plays a role in the maintenance of intracellular Ca2+ homeostasis. CarP is also required for Ca2+-regulated production of the virulence factors, pyocyanin and pyoverdine. We are currently studying the role of CarP in the adaptations of the pathogen to its niches within a host. We also aim to identify the environmental stimuli regulating the transcription of CarP and the involved regulatory mechanisms. In addition, I am working towards characterizing the function and structure of CarP aiming to elucidate its role in the cell.

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