Erin Curtis

Smith – Lab Member 

MGM Graduate Student (2019)




Research Interest:
Originally from a small town in Northeast Pennsylvania, Erin decided to take on Syracuse University for her undergraduate education. Looking to experience everything that her university had to offer, she began research in Dr. Anthony Garza’s laboratory studying bacterial natural products through utilizing Myxococcus xanthus as a heterologous host to express novel antibiotics.

After graduating with a B.S. in Biology, Erin continued to explore her research passions and sought the opportunity to work with Dr. Roy Welch exploring a unique predatory behavior in M. xanthus known as “rippling”. Erin worked with a knockout library to determine the genes that play a roll in this unique phenotype. She also branched out and worked with Dr. Heidi Hehnly in order to understand the roll that PLK1 plays in preferential chromosome misalignment toward the mother centriole during cell division.

Now pursuing her Ph.D. at Duke, Erin is excited to study the effects that bacteria have on their host counterparts, and better understand the bacterial pathways that contribute to these interactions.

Personal Interests:
My interests range from playing video games, watching anime, baking, camping, and relaxing with my cats.


Colicino EG, Stevens K, Curtis E, Rathbun L, Bates M, Manikas J, Amack J, Freshour J, Hehnly H. Chromosome misalignment is associated with PLK1 activity at cenexin-positive mitotic centrosomes.