Toslim Mahmud earned his PhD under the mentorship of Terry Kwok-Scheilein in her Helicobacter pylori research lab at Monash University in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. He specialized in the function of the VacA virulence factor of H. pylori and he continues his work with VacA in the Kearney Lab, forcing the evolution of VacA in response to long-term, step-wise increases in a guided antimicrobial peptide targeted against VacA. He will be examining the loss of phenotype of VacA in the resulting mutants. Toslim is also busy working with other virulence factors of H. pylori on other projects.
Originally from Trinidad and Tobago, Mikaeel Young earned his PhD at the University of Central Florida in Orlando, FL centered on the production of nanoparticles for the control of both plant and human pathogens. He continued his antimicrobial drug discovery work in his postdoctoral position at the University of Rochester Medical Center working to identify inhibitors of S. aureus PBP4 in prevention and treatment of S. aureus related osteomyelitis. Additionally he worked to develop efflux pump inhibitors to reverse antibiotic resistance in A. baumannii . In the Kearney Lab, Mikaeel is working on guide peptides against a variety of different targets as well as supporting other projects with his cellular structure and confocal microscopy skills.