Colleen Jonsson

NIMBioS Director, Professor of Microbiology

Phone: 865-974-9362

Departmental Website

Colleen Jonsson has over twenty-two years of experience in the study of highly pathogenic human viruses and an additional eight in plant infectious agents represented in more than 108 publications and five patents. Her research program focuses on basic and translational research questions targeting respiratory and hemorrhagic fever viruses. The basic research programs have centered on mechanisms within viral life cycles and virus-host interactions. These findings have provided motivation for translation of assays for discovery of small molecules by high-throughput screening and testing of these molecules in small animal models. Her translational efforts have included collaborative efforts in drug discovery with numerous academic, government and biotechnology partners. Internationally, she has led five workshops in Latin America to train small groups in Public Health or research laboratories in recombinant DNA technology, diagnostics, collection of rodent and general biosafety concerning hantavirus. She has also engaged in international research that focused on the ecological and evolutionary dynamics of the rodent-hantavirus interaction and collaborated in the development of models to uncover the drivers or anthropogenic land cover change factors responsible for the apparent shifting dynamics of hantavirus prevalence in rodent species. She has trained professional level, undergraduate, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in her laboratories from the USA, France, Germany, Honduras, Brazil and Paraguay. Her research has been funded by the NIH, NSF and DoD. Topics of expertise: RNA viruses, hantaviruses, influenza viruses, SARS CoV, retroviruses, virus-host relationships