DeLeo Research Group

Bacterial pathogenesis and host defense

Frank R. DeLeo, Ph.D.

Chief, Laboratory of Bacteriology
Chief, Pathogen-Host Cell Biology Section

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Ph.D., 1996, Montana State University

Dr. DeLeo received his Ph.D. in microbiology from Montana State University in 1996, studying the molecular basis of superoxide generation by human neutrophils. He did his postdoctoral training in the area of innate immunity and infectious diseases in the Department of Medicine at the University of Iowa (1996–2000). Dr. DeLeo joined the staff at the NIAID Rocky Mountain Laboratories in 2000 as a tenure-track investigator. He served previously as Acting Chief (2007-2013) and Chief (2013-2015) of the Laboratory of Human Bacterial Pathogenesis. Dr. DeLeo was appointed to the NIH Senior Biomedical Research Service (2011-2017) and elected as an American Academy of Microbiology Fellow in 2017. He is currently Chief of the Laboratory of Bacteriology.

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Frank DeLeo headshot

Brett A. Freedman, M.S.


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M.S., 2005, Frostburg State University

I studied wildlife/fisheries biology in graduate school. I changed career paths, working with Dr. Mark Jutila’s immunology group at Montana State University in 2006. I have continued this work as a biologist at Rocky Mountain Laboratories since 2010.

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Scott D. Kobayashi, Ph.D.

Associate Scientist, Laboratory of Bacteriology

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Ph.D., 1998, Microbiology, Montana State University

Languages Spoken: French

Dr. Kobayashi studied medical mycology as a graduate student and was a postdoctoral fellow on the antifungal program team at Pharmacia in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Dr. Kobayashi also trained as a postdoctoral fellow at the NIAID Rocky Mountain Laboratories and was an Assistant Professor at the University of Idaho and investigated Yersinia pestis pathogenesis. Dr. Kobayashi’s current research is...

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Natalia Malachowa, Ph.D. (She/Her/Hers)

Staff Scientist

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Ph.D., Biochemistry, 2008, Jagiellonian University, Krakow Poland

M.Sc., Biology, Molecular Biology specialization, 2003 Jagiellonian University, Krakow Poland

Languages Spoken: Polish, Russian, German

As a graduate student Dr. Malachowa identified new virulence factors involved in the pathogenesis of infections caused by Staphylococcus aureu s. Then she joined Dr. DeLeo lab, as a postdoctoral trainee, at the NIAID Rocky Mountain Laboratories to focus on innate immunity and infectious diseases. Dr. Malachowa remained at RML and began her employment as a Staff Scientist in 2015. She plays a...

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Adeline Rose Porter, B.S. (She/Her/Hers)


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As a member of the DeLeo research group in the Laboratory of Bacteriology, my research focuses primarily on the interaction of human neutrophils with bacterial pathogens.

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Former Research Group Members

Postdoctoral Fellows:

2001-2006 Jovanka M. Voyich, Ph.D.

2003-2006 Christopher Burlak II, Ph.D.

2007-2008 Christy L. Ventura, Ph.D.

2005-2009 Amy Palazzolo-Ballance, Ph.D.

2005-2010 Adam D. Kennedy, Ph.D.

2010-2012 Kevin M. Rigby, Ph.D.

2012-2014 Thea Lu, Ph.D.

2013-2015 Amanda J. Brinkworth, Ph.D.

2014-2016 Tyler Nygaard, Ph.D.

2018-2021 Shayla Hesse, M.D.

2019-2020 Qingjing Wang, Ph.D.

2019-2022 Viktoria Rungelrath, Ph.D.

2019-2022 Clement Opoku-Temeng, Ph.D.

Graduate Students (Ph.D. Students):

2007-2011 Shawna F. Graves, Ph.D.

2011-2012 Devon L. Rasmussen, D.D.S.

Post-Bac IRTAs:

2006-2007 Antonia Thomas, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, NY

2008-2009 Ashley Warren, University of Montana, Missoula, MT

2015-2017 Will McGuinness, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT

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