de Wit Research Group

The goal of the Molecular Pathogenesis Section (MPS) is to increase our understanding of the pathogenesis of emerging respiratory viruses on every level, from host to molecule. We study the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2, Nipah virus, and the 1918 influenza H1N1 virus in animal models and human lung organoids.

Emmie de Wit, Ph.D. (She/Her/Hers)

Senior Investigator, Molecular Pathogenesis Section

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Education:

Ph.D., Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands

Dr. de Wit received her Ph.D. in virology from Erasmus University Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Her research there focused on the replication, pathogenesis, and transmission of influenza A virus. Dr. de Wit then moved to the Laboratory of Virology of NIAID in Hamilton, Montana, to work in the biosafety level 4 laboratory there. When SARS-CoV-2 emerged in late 2019, Dr. de Wit focused her research on SARS-CoV-2, developing animal models and using those for testing of medical countermeasures and gaining a better understanding of SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis.

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Meaghan Flagg, Ph.D. (She/Her/Hers)

Postdoctoral IRTA Fellow

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Education:

Ph.D., Harvard University

Meaghan is interested in the immune response and immunopathogenesis of viral infections at mucosal surfaces. She uses 3D human respiratory organoid models to study how viruses and the immune response impact epithelial cell function and tissue repair.

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Kerry Goldin, DVM (She/Her/Hers)

Graduate Student

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Education:

St. Petersburg College, St. Petersburg, FL 
University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN

Kerry studies neuropathology associated with emerging respiratory viruses, including Nipah virus and SARS-CoV-2. Prior to coming to NIH, she graduated from veterinary school and completed a residency in Anatomic Pathology. Kerry is a Fellow in the Comparative Biomedical Scientist Training Program.

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Tessa Lutterman, B.Sc. (She/Her/Hers)

Lab Technician

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Education:

B.Sc., Allegheny College, PA

Languages Spoken: German

Tessa is interested in the neuropathogenesis of Nipah virus. She is involved with research focused on Nipah virus model development.

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Johan A. Ortiz-Morales, B.S. (He/Him/They/Them)

Postbaccalaureate IRTA Fellow

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Education:

B.S., Universidad Ana G Mendez, Carolina, Puerto Rico

Languages Spoken: Spanish

Johan is interested in learning about microorganisms. During his time at RML, he will be working with virus-host interactions and respiratory tract organoids.

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Manmeet Singh, Ph.D. (He/Him/His)

Postdoctoral IRTA Fellow

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Education:

Ph.D., Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Kolkata, India

Languages Spoken: Hindi, Punjabi, Bengali

Manmeet has been working on development of animal model to study Nipah virus neurological disease. He has also been involved in responding to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and working towards understanding the difference in pathogenicity of different SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern.

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Gayatri Subramanian, Ph.D. (She/Her/Hers)

Research Fellow

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Education:

Ph.D., University of Toledo, OH

Languages Spoken: Hindi, Tamil

Gayatri is currently developing a drug-screening model for emerging respiratory viruses using SARS-CoV-2 and Influenza A viruses and targeting the Golgi, a critical site for viral replication and innate immunity.

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Brandi Williamson, M.P.H.

Microbiologist

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Education:

M.P.H., University of California, Berkeley

Languages Spoken: German

Brandi has studied multiple organisms and vectors throughout her career, including Borrelia hermsii, Ornithodoros hermsi, Colorado Tick fever virus, Dermacentor andersoni, orthobunyaviruses, and hantaviruses. Her work has included next-generation sequencing, animal studies, field work, and molecular biology techniques. Currently in MPS, she aids the research of Nipah, SARS-CoV-2, and influenza viruses.

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Former Research Group Members

Katherine Kaul, Postbac IRTA

Lizzette Pérez-Pérez, Postbac IRTA

Beniah Brumbaugh, Postbac IRTA 

Reinaldo Mercado-Hernandez, Postbac IRTA 

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