Mark Sistrom

Mark Sistrom

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Hi Aylee, Thanks very much for supporting the project! At the moment, the project is envisioned as a discovery project and you're quite right, we may not find anything. Based on some other work I'm currently involved in with another postdoc here at Yale using bacteriophage viruses to treat multi-resistant bacterial infections, I speculate that the gecko's ability to resist infections might be generated by a bacterial or fungal symbiont on the skin - and we could use genetic approaches to characterize the skin microbiome of the geckos - which would be a cool project on its own, but also another possible route to determining the source of their resistance to infection. Testing blood might also be an approach, but as the geckos don't usually bleed when they slough skin defensively, I personally suspect the skin or secretions directly below it are better bets. I'll let you know as we progress! Thanks again, Mark.
Jul 19, 2014
Can we discover new antibiotic compounds in gecko skin?
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Hi Aylee, Thanks very much for supporting the project! At the moment, the project is envisioned as a discovery project and you're quite right, we may not find anything. Based on some other work I'm currently involved in with another postdoc here at Yale using bacteriophage viruses to treat multi-resistant bacterial infections, I speculate that the gecko's ability to resist infections might be generated by a bacterial or fungal symbiont on the skin - and we could use genetic approaches to characterize the skin microbiome of the geckos - which would be a cool project on its own, but also another possible route to determining the source of their resistance to infection. Testing blood might also be an approach, but as the geckos don't usually bleed when they slough skin defensively, I personally suspect the skin or secretions directly below it are better bets. I'll let you know as we progress! Thanks again, Mark.
Jul 19, 2014
Can we discover new antibiotic compounds in gecko skin?
View comment