Genetic circuits are powerful, natural computers. Many bacteriophages use genetic circuits during infection to make a binary decision between two life cycles. Each life cycle requires distinct patterns of gene expression, and circuits regulate this process. The goal of my project is to elucidate how phage genetic circuits evolve and impact the process of infection. Understanding these evolutionary dynamics can provide deeper insight into phage biological diversity as well as improve the design of synthetic circuits for emerging industries such as microbial computing and biofuel production.

Travis earned his bachelor’s degree in Genetic and Developmental Biology from the Pennsylvania State University in 2004. Subsequently, he developed his interests in genetics and genomics as a researcher in several institutions, including the J. Craig Venter Institute. He joined the Hatfull Lab in 2014 as a graduate student where he is researching the evolution of genetic circuits.

Travis can be contacted at:

Department of Biological Sciences
4249 5th Avenue
University of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
(412) 624 4313