Karen Kormuth
Karen Kormuth Ph.D.

Assistant Professor


Kirkpatrick Hall, Room 107


After completing my Ph.D. in Biological Sciences (biochemistry and DNA/RNA biology) at CMU, I transitioned to a postdoc in translational research at the interface of influenza virology and aerobiology engineering at Pitt. As part of my postdoctoral research, I identified a role for human airway mucus in the stabilization of influenza viruses released into the environment, both in the air and on surfaces. This work was published in JID (2018), and featured in a Nature Research Highlight and various local media outlets. I am excited to continue this work at Bethany using a bacteriophage model system.

I became interested in this work through my postdoctoral research, which was a combined effort among influenza virologists at Pitt and collaborators in aerobiology engineering at Virginia Tech.

B.A., Washington & Jefferson College (2010)
Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University (2016)
Postdoctoral Scholar, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine (2016-2019)

Areas of Passion & Research
Influenza Virology, Aerobiology, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, RNA Biology

Personal Interests
I am deeply interested in exploring new methods for science communication to share scientific knowledge in the classroom, with the broader college community, and beyond.

Favorite Quote, Book, or Movie … Why?
I always enjoy revisiting the Harry Potter book series!

Recent Publications (within the past 7 years)

  • Datta, A., Pollock, K.J., Kormuth, K.A.*, Brosh Jr., R.M.* 2021. G-quadruplex assembly by ribosomal DNA: emerging roles in disease pathogenesis and cancer biology. Cytogenetic and Genome Research, In press.
  • Le Sage, V., Kormuth, K.A., et al. 2021. Cell culture adaptation of H3N2 influenza virus impacts acid stability and reduces ferret airborne transmission. Viruses, 13(5), 719.
  • Le Sage, V., Jones, J.E., Kormuth, K.A., et al. 2021. Pre-existing immunity provides a barrier to airborne transmission of influenza viruses. PLoS Pathogens, 17 (2), e1009273.
  • Aravelo, C.P., Le Sage, V., Bolton, M.J., Eilola, T.J., Jones, J.E., Kormuth, K.A., et al. 2020. Original antigenic sin priming of influenza virus hemagglutinin stalk antibodies. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117 (29), 17221-17227.
  • Kormuth, K.A., Lakdawala, S.S. 2020. Emerging antiviral resistance. Nature Microbiology, 5, 4-5. Kormuth, K.A., et al. 2019. Environmental persistence of influenza viruses is dependent upon virus type and host origin. mSphere, 4 (4), 1-14.
  • Kormuth, K.A. 2019. Staying Alive: Tips for Air-liquid Interface Cultures. BiteSize Bio. November 21.
  • Kormuth, K.A., Lin K., Prussin II, A.J., Vejerano, E.P., Tiwari, A.J., Cox, S.S. Myerburg, M.M., Lakdawala, S.S., Marr, L.C. 2018. “Influenza virus infectivity is retained in aerosols and droplets independent of relative humidity.” The Journal of Infectious Diseases, 218(5), 739-747.
  • Kormuth, K.A., Woolford, J.W., Armitage, B.A. 2016. “Homologous PNA hybridization to noncanonical DNA G-quadruplexes,” 55(12), 1749-1757.