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Denise Kirschner, Michigan

A Multi-scale systems biology approach toward tuberculosis infection interventions 



Dr. Denise Kirschner received her Ph.D. in dynamical systems from Tulane University in 1991, which included training at Los Alamos National Laboratories as part of her studies. She did a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Vanderbilt University with joint appointments in both Mathematics and Infectious Diseases. She joined the University of Michigan in 1996 where she is now a Full Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. At UM, she is involved with the Center for Complex Systems as well as Biomedical Engineering, Bioinformatics, and at the School of Public Health. Her research for the past 20 years has focused on applying mathematical and computational techniques to study questions related to host-pathogen interactions. Her main focus has been to study persistent infections with pathogens that have evolved strategies to evade or circumvent the host-immune responses. Her goal is to understand the complex dynamics involved, together with how perturbations (e.g. treatment) can lead to health. Her work is well funded by the National Institutes of Health and she has published over 100 research papers. In addition, she serves as editor for a number of journals in both immunology and mathematics, including serving as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Theoretical Biology. Dr. Kirschner's original interests were in medicine, and she has now come full circle to realizing her strength in mathematics with her love of biology.