Dr. Guentzel’s research interests are in the area of infectious diseases; specifically microbial pathogenesis and immunity to infectious diseases. The current focus of his lab is to study the mechanisms of virulence used by various microorganisms, especially in the gastrointestinal tract. An in-depth insight into the virulence mechanisms of pathogens will provide a strong platform for the development of preventive or therapeutic approaches.
Dr. Guentzel is also collaborating on pathogenesis and immunity to three bacterial agents: 1) Chlamydia trachomatis, the major reportable sexually transmissible disease, 2) Francisella tularensis, the cause of tularemia, and a select (bio-threat) agent, and 3) Acinetobacter baumanii, a major wound pathogen and cause of death in injured soldiers and an emerging hospital acquired pathogen. Dr. Guentzel hopes that their findings will lead to a better understanding of how these human pathogens cause disease and better ways to control them, including possible vaccines.