Zebrafish lymphoid network glows green against magenta-tinged scales
© T. Robertson, Huttenlocher Lab

Hawaiian Bobtail Squid
© R. Isenberg, Mandel Lab

An egg infected with bioluminescent influenza virus
© A. Mehle, Mehle Lab

Confocal Micrograph of E. Coli Infected Mouse Bladder Cells
© R. Welch, Welch Lab

The mission of the Department of Medical Microbiology & Immunology is to provide comprehensive scientific instruction to students, conduct novel and meaningful research, and offer consultation and service in microbiology and immunology as they relate to human health and disease.

Since the Department of Medical Microbiology & Immunology’s establishment in 1935, we have made fundamental contributions to the study of infectious disease and immunity. Our current faculty are well-established, recognized leaders in the field.

Research underway in our department involves bacterial, fungal, protozoan, and viral pathogens. Organisms under study are: Toxoplasma gondii, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, Mycobacterium sp., Brucellasp., Listeria, Blastomyces, Aspergillus, Cryptococcus neoformans, Candida, influenza virus, Herpes simplex, and uropathogenic Escherichia coli. Faculty also investigate diverse immunological topics such as the sexual dimorphism of immune responses, regulatory T cell biology, leukocyte migration, and vaccine development.

We  provide an exceptional learning environment for undergraduates through rigorous coursework and research opportunities. Graduate students may earn a Ph.D. through our nationally acclaimed, Microbiology Doctoral Training Program which is ranked first among U.S. public institutions and third nationwide.


Andrew Hryckowian, PhD

“A research opportunity I had in high school which involved bacteriophage research opened countless doors for me and helped lead me to my current interests in bacterial pathogens and microbial communities.”

Meet Drew!


Marta Gaglia, PhD

“We are often told that there is one way to do this job and this career – it is not true. If you want to do it, you can do it your own way.”

Meet Marta!


Caitlin Pepperell, PhD

“Science is hard work and challenging in myriad ways, but at its essence it should be a joyful pursuit. Look for mentors, opportunities and environments that make you excited about the pursuit of new knowledge.”

Meet Caitlin!


Throughout the academic year, the Department of Medical Microbiology & Immunology hosts several seminars covering a range of immunological topics.


Diversity is a source of strength, creativity, and innovation for UW–Madison. We value the contributions of each person and respect the profound ways their identity, culture, background, experience, status, and abilities enrich the university.


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