Jonas Stenløkke Madsen
My research focuses on how bacteria interact, the molecular biology behind interactions, and how these social interactions evolve. Basically, the molecular biology and evolution of conflict, manipulation, sharing, and dependencies among bacteria.
I am especially interested in the role horizontal gene transfer – gene-sharing between bacteria – has in bacterial social evolution. The critical increase of antibiotic resistance among infectious bacteria, for example, is a striking and scary outcome of horizontal gene transfer. Sharing of genes is typically facilitated by mobile genetic elements and I studying how such elements interact with the rest of the host genome, in addition to how such interactions effect the social behavior of the host bacterium.
In order to experimentally address the hypothesis driven research briefly described above, an important part of my work is to develop molecular tools and engineer bacteria. The experimental research conducted by my group utilizes genome engineering (e.g. by CRISPR/Cas), synthetic biology, and fluorescence reporter gene technologies, FACS, CLSM, high-throughput sequencing, transcriptomics, and classical microbiology methodologies. We also use in vivo animal and plant models that are made available by collaborators with proper facilities.