The Department of Microbiology and Environmental Toxicology (METX) focuses on the human and environmental health impacts of chemicals and pathogens. This interdisciplinary focus has led to new insights into how microbes cause disease and affect the bioavailability of toxicants in the environment, as well as how organisms respond to these harmful agents. While our research is driven by biological questions, it has a significant translational component and has led to the identification of novel therapeutic targets, approaches for bioremediation, and markers of toxicant exposure. In addition, our department provides an exciting and effective training environment for graduate and undergraduate research and teaching. The METX faculty have been very successful in developing independent and interdisciplinary research programs, publishing in top-rated peer-reviewed journals, and advancing through the professoriate ranks. Moreover our graduate training prepares students to become leaders in various fields, following career paths in academia, teaching, industry, and government.
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Don Smith, distinguished professor of microbiology and environmental toxicology, has been awarded the 2022-2023 Outstanding Faculty Award from the Division of Physical and Biological Sciences. The annual award is the division’s highest honor for faculty achievement, recognizing combined excellence in research, teaching, and service.