Patrick McLaughlin receives P. Dennis Smith Award
Congratulations to Patrick McLaughlin, graduate student recipient of the 2019 P. Dennis Smith in Research in Genetics Award. Patrick is a PhD candidate in the laboratory of Dr. Penelope Higgs. His research involves understanding the mechanisms of biofilm formation in the bacteria M. xanthus. Most bacteria in the environment live in multicellular communities known as biofilm, which contribute to the progression of disease and environmental biofouling. Formation of these multicellular structures requires behavioral coordination and heterogeneity that is often controlled through genetic regulatory networks (GRNs). Patrick’s research is to work to elucidate the role of network motifs in coordinating multicellular biofilm formation.