about the department

The Department of Microbiology and Immunology (MIC) provides an innovative environment for students and postdoctoral fellows that seek to participate in research of the highest caliber. A wide range of interests is represented in the department, including both basic and medical aspects of Bacteriology, Virology, Immunology, Parasitology, Infectious Diseases, and Pathogenic Mechanisms. All of these research areas are critical to the Department of Defense (DoD) mission of maintaining and improving the health and stability of our Nation’s military as well as civilian populations. Faculty leading outstanding and productive research programs are also far better able to serve the educational and training missions of the DoD.

In addition to research, MIC faculty each play major roles across the entire curriculum for the uniformed medical students. MIC faculty also play key roles in graduate education by participation in the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Emerging Infectious Diseases (EID). This program is designed for full-time students who wish to pursue professional research and academic careers in the various disciplines encompassed within the field of EID. MIC faculty all hold joint appointments with the EID Graduate Program. Additionally, several MIC faculty also hold joint appointments within additional USU departments and graduate programs.

MIC is housed close to the Departments of Biochemistry, Anatomy, Physiology & Genetics, Pathology, and Pharmacology and Molecular Therapeutics. Cooperation among these departments facilitates intellectual exchange and research collaboration as well as support of the graduate programs. In addition to modern, well-equipped laboratories within the department, the Biomedical Instrumentation Center (BIC) provides core facilities for imaging, flow cytometry, proteomics, and protein and DNA sequencing. An AAALAC-accredited animal facility within the Department of Laboratory Animal Resources (DLAR) provides husbandry, procedural rooms, and veterinary care for 9 species of laboratory animals used for biomedical research.

Our Mission.

To provide excellence in education and to conduct innovative applied and translational research in an inclusive environment by addressing fundamental questions in microbiology and immunology. To deliver an improved understanding of the scientific basis for prevention, pathogenesis, diagnosis, and treatment of infectious and immunologically-mediated human diseases for the improvement of public health and military medicine. 


Our Vision.

Foster academic excellence for a community of scholars through interdisciplinary, innovative, and collaborative education and discovery that will advance public health and improve warfighter care.


microbiology in the military

  1. Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) occur at high incidence in the U.S. military and have a significant cost with respect to diagnosis, treatment, and time lost from duty
  2. Understanding antimicrobial resistance and the means to counter it is a critical need for the future of human health
  3. Defining the roles of the host immune response to infection as well as to cancer and injury can lead to new methods of intervention
  4. The development of vaccines and antimicrobial and anti-parasitic agents benefits both the military and civilian sectors