Biological Sciences
University of Pittsburgh


Dr. Hatfull’s research focuses on the molecular genetics of the mycobacteria and their bacteriophages. These studies take advantage of the intimacy of phage-host interactions to gain insights into the genetics and physiology of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of human TB. Through integrated research-education programs such as the PHIRE and SEA-PHAGES programs, the large collection of completely sequenced actinobacteriophage genomes provides insights into viral diversity and evolution, and represents a rich toolbox of new approaches to understanding M. tuberculosis and other mycobacterial pathogens. Development of vector systems, selectable markers, recombineering approaches, expression tools, and insights into mycobacterial biofilms reflect some of the potential genetic applications, and diagnosis and therapeutic interventions are some of the clinical applications.