Jim Alfano, Charles Bessey Professor of plant pathology, has been named a 2015 fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology.
The academy represents a leadership group within the American Society for Microbiology, the world’s oldest and largest organization dedicated to life sciences. Alfano will receive fellowship recognition at a June 2 ceremony in New Orleans, site of the ASM’s 115th General Meeting.
Alfano studies how bacterial pathogens cause disease in plants, focusing especially on a secretion system that allows pathogens to inject virulent proteins into plant cells.
Having demonstrated that a certain class of proteins can suppress a plant’s immune system, Alfano’s research has also made strides in identifying and boosting critical components of that immunity.
Alfano joined the UNL faculty in 2002, becoming director of the undergraduate microbiology program in 2011. He also serves as a member of UNL’s Center for Plant Science Innovation.
Alfano was named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2012.