Simpson, Morgan (Petri)
Clostridioides difficile (formerly Clostridium difficile) is the causative agent of Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI), and in recent decades, a hypervirulent strain of C. difficile has emerged. In addition to the primary clostridial toxins, hypervirulent strains of C. difficile express a binary toxin, CDT. Our lab has previously shown that CDT can exacerbate CDI, and that the toll-like receptor 2 is capable of recognizing CDT to generate downstream inflammation. My primary interest is to expand upon this work by investigating the mechanism of TLR2-mediated recognition of CDT, and to further characterize the downstream immune response induced by this interaction.