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Lori D. Banks

Assistant Professor of Biology





B.S. Biology – Prairie View A&M University
Ph.D. Biomedical Sciences – Molecular Virology and Microbiology

During my sophomore year of college, the Ameri-thrax attacks and other subsequent bioterrorism threats changed the tone and focus of my study of biology and chemistry. I discovered that the key to fighting bioterrorism, antibiotic resistance, and epidemic, infectious diseases, all centered on a molecular understanding of host-pathogen interactions. After years in the research lab, I have come to understand that the interactions of molecules drive lots of other kinds of disease as well. Identifying and characterizing the most important of these interactions gives us the starting point for most drug design, and a chance to create new medicine. The focus of the Banks Lab is to understand the key structural features of selected microbial proteins that can be exploited in the design of new anti-microbial agents.

Selected Publications

D Murray, J Drummond, D Ritter, K Martin, L Banks, D Whittington. Bioinformatics Bootcamp: A model for training clinical researchers. Medical Research Archives. Vol 8 No 5 (2020): Vol.8 issue 5 May 2020. DOI: 10.18103/mra.v8i5.2108.

MA Engevik, LD Banks, KA Engevik, AL Chang-Graham, JL Perry, DS Hutchinson, NJ Ajami, JF Petrosino, JM Hyser. Microbial Degradation of Ileal Mucus Promotes Rotavirus Infection. Gastroenterology. Volume 158, Issue 6, Supplement 1, S-226-S-227, MAY 01, 2020. Proceedings of the 2020 Digestive Diseases Week. DOI: 10.1016/S0016-5085(20)31254-3.

*MA Engevik, *LD Banks, KA Engevik, AL Chang-Graham, JL Perry, DS Hutchinson, NJ Ajami, JF Petrosino, JM Hyser. Rotavirus infection induces glycan availability to promote ileum-specific changes in the microbiome aiding rotavirus virulence. Gut Microbes. 2020 Sep 2;11(5):1324-1347. DOI: 10.1080/19490976.2020.1754714.

Publications as LB Horton:

TG Hammerstrom, LB Horton, MC Swick, A Joachimiak, J Osipiuk, TM Koehler. Crystal structure of Bacillus anthracis virulence regulator AtxA and effects of phosphorylated histidines on multimerization and activity. Molecular Microbiology. 2015 Feb;95(3):426-41. DOI: 10.1111/mmi.12867.

Sastri, N.P., Viskovska, M., Hyser, J.M., Tanner, M.R., Horton, L.B., Sankaran, B., Prasad, B.V.V., and M.K. Estes. 2014. Structural plasticity of the coiled-coil domain of rotavirus NSP4. J. Virology 88(23):13602-13612.
DOI: 10.1128/JVI.02227-14

Chen, P., Horton, L.B., Mikulski, R.L., Deng, L., Sundriyal, S.,  Palzkill, T., and Y. Song. 2012. 2-Substituted 4,5-dihydrothiazole-4-carboxylic acids are novel inhibitors of metallo-beta-lactamases. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters 22(19):6229-6232.
DOI: 10.1016/j.bmcl.2012.08.012