Alexander W. Ensminger

Alexander W. Ensminger

Associate Professor

BSc, Haverford College, 1999
PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2006
Postdoc, Tufts University School of Medicine, 2006-2011

Address 661 University Avenue - MaRS West Tower
Room 1637

Toronto, ON M5G 1M1
Lab Ensminger Group
Lab Phone 416-978-3831
Office Phone 416-978-6522

Research Description

The Evolution of Microbial Disease

The Ensminger lab is interested in the evolution of microbial pathogens and the mechanisms by which these diminutive organisms persist in our environment and make us sick.

We focus our attention primarily on Legionella pneumophila, a remarkable bacterial pathogen that maintains the microbial world’s largest known arsenal of translocated effectors (with over 300 identified to date). Unlocking the secrets of this arsenal holds immense promise to provide novel insight into fundamental eukaryotic pathways, human health, and disease.

We use a variety of approaches in the lab, from advanced sequencing technologies (Illumina, Pacific Biosciences), bioinformatics, microbial genetics, high-throughput genetic and chemogenetic screening, and experimental evolution.