Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi

Louise Lyle

An Outstanding Islander

Outline photo of Louise Lyle

Learning Laboratory
Louise Lyle is confident that her research in environmental pathology through the Island University will lead her on a path to work for the Centers for Disease Control. The biomedical science major, who plans to graduates in May 2011 and attend graduate school, began her research career in December 2008 as a BUENO student within the Undergraduate Mentoring in Environmental Biology (UMEB) program. Lyle, a 2007 Tuloso-Midway High School graduate, has been working in Dr. Gregory Buck’s laboratory, studying the bacterium Vibrio vulnificus, which is normally found in the Gulf of Mexico. Under the collaboration of Dr. Buck and Dr. Joanna Mott, Lyle performs genetic and molecular biological analyses to determine how Vibrio can go from living in the ocean to causing diseases in humans through eating raw seafood or by marine waters entering humans through wounds. While most healthy individuals may experience gastroenteritis after ingesting Vibrio, Lyle says, those with compromised immune systems such as diabetics could have more severe reactions. Lyle analyzes samples from the Texas Gulf Coast, including five Corpus Christi environmental samples. Last summer, Lyle conducted research at the University of Iowa-Roy Carver College of Medicine, focusing on Vibrio parahaemolyticus and probing key regulators responsible for quorum sensing. Lyle and her fellow lab mates have co-authored 11 posters and presentations at national and international meetings, including the sole undergraduate poster at the American Society for Microbiology Foodborne Pathogens meeting in Toronto, Canada, in June 2010, and the Vibrios in the Environment meeting in Biloxi, Miss., November 2010. The trio is currently writing a manuscript for possible publication. Lyle, a member of the Sigma Xi Honors Society, has also presented at meetings geared toward students, including the University SURF Symposium, the Society for Chicanos and Native Americans in Science, and winning the Orville Wyss Award for Second Place Undergraduate Oral Student Presentation at the Texas American Society for Microbiology (ASM) Branch Meeting.

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