Research and Publications


Antimicrobial resistance is a threat to public health. The Boll laboratory is focused on understanding a variety of antimicrobial resistance mechanisms.  We also aim to develop new therapeutics to combat multidrug resistant bacteria. We are particularly interested in Gram-negative bacteria that thrive in hospitals and other clinical settings.

A few of the projects that we are focused on the laboratory are:

  1. How Gram-negative bacteria chemically modify the cell surface to develop resistance to clinically relevant antimicrobials and biocides.
  2. Understanding the signaling pathways that regulate chemical addition to the bacterial cell surface.
  3. Drug discovery to develop antimicrobial compounds that can inhibit growth of drug resistant bacteria.

Selected Publications:

Peer-Reviewed Publications

14. Septation defects and LD-transpeptidases promote selection of colistin resistant lipooligosaccharide-deficient Acinetobacter baumannii. Kang, K.N., Kazi, M.I., Biboy, J., Gray, J., Bovermann, H., Ausman, J., Boutte, C.C., Vollmer, W., Boll, J.M., (2020). mBio. (in revision)

13. Discovery and characterization of New Delhi metallo-β-lactamase-1 inhibitor peptides that potentiate meropenem-dependent killing of carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae. Kazi, M.K., Perry, B.W., Card, D.C., Schargel, R.D., Ali, H.B., Obuekwe, V.C., Sapkota, M., Kang, K.N., Pellegrino, M.W., Greenberg, D.E., Castoe, T.A., Boll, J.M., (2020) Journal of Antimicrob. Chemo. DOI: 10.1093/jac/dkaa242.

12. Generating Transposon Insertion Libraries in Gram-negative bacteria for high-throughput sequencing. Kazi, M.K., Schargel, R.D., Boll, J.M., (2020). JoVE. (161) DOI: 10.3791/61612

11. Biofilm-associated Mycobacterium abscessus cells have altered antibiotic tolerance and surface glycolipids in Artificial Cystic Fibrosis Sputum Media. Hunt, A.C., Parks, B.J., Boll, J.M., Boutte, C.C., (2019) Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. AAC.02488-18. 63(7):e02488-18.

10. Colistin heteroresistance in Enterobacter cloacae is mediated by PhoPQ-dependent 4-amino-4-deoxy-L-arabinose addition to lipid A. Kang, K.N., Klein D.R., Kazi, M.I., Guerin, F., Cattoir, V., Brodbelt, J.S., Boll, J.M., (2019) Mol. Microbiol. 111(6):1604-1616.

9. A penicillin-binding protein inhibits selection of colistin-resistant lipooligosaccharide-deficient Acinetobacter baumannii. Boll, J.M., Crofts, A.A., Peters, K., Cattoir, V., Vollmer, W., Davies, B.W., Trent, M.S., (2016) PNAS 113(41) E:6228-E:6237. Recommendation on F1000 Prime

8. Power of Asymmetry: Architecture and Assembly of Gram-negative Outer Membrane Lipid Bilayer. Henderson, J.C., Zimmerman, S.M., Crofts, A.A., Boll, J.M., Kuhns, L.G., Herrera, C.M., Trent, M.S., (2016) Ann. Rev. of Micro. 70:255-278.

7. Outer Membrane Vesicles Displaying Engineered Glycotopes Elicit Protective Antibodies. Chen, L., Valentine, J.L., Huang, C., Endicott, C.E., Rasmussen, J.A., Fletcher, J.R., Boll, J.M., Rosenthal, J.A., Heiss, C., Azadi, P., Putnam, D., Trent, M.S., Jones, B.D., DeLisa, M.P., (2016) PNAS 113(26) E:3609-3618.

6. UVliPiD:  A UVPD-based hierarchical approach for de novo characterization of lipid A structures. Morrison, L.J., Parker, W.R., Holden, D.D., Henderson, J.C., Boll, J.M., Trent, M.S., Brodbelt, J.S., (2016) Anal. Chem. 88(3):1812-1820.

5. Reinforcing Lipid A Acylation on the Cell Surface of Acinetobacter baumannii Promotes Cationic Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance and Desiccation Survival. Boll, J.M., Tucker, A.T., Klein, D.R., Beltran A.M., Brodbelt J.S., Davies, B.W., Trent M.S., (2015) mBio 6(3):e00478-15.

4. Crystallographic study of the phosphoethanolamine transferase EptC required for polymyxin resistance and motility in Campylobacter jejuni. Fage, C.D., Brown, D.B., Boll, J.M., Keatinge-Clay, A.T., Trent, M.S., (2014) Acta. Crystall. Sec. D 70(Pt 10):2730-9.

3. Defining gene-phenotype relationship in Acinetobacter baumannii through one-step chromosomal inactivationTucker, A.T., Nowicki, E.M., Boll, J.M., Knauf, G.A., Burdis, N.C., Davies, B.W., (2014) mBio 5(4):e01313-14.

2.  A regulatory checkpoint during flagellar biogenesis in Campylobacter jejuni initiates signal transduction to activate transcription of flagellar genes. Boll, J.M. and Hendrixson, D.R., (2013) mBio 4(5):e00432-13.

1.  A specificity determinant for phosphorylation of a response regulator prevents in vivo cross-talk and modification by acetyl phosphate. Boll, J.M. and Hendrixson, D.R., (2011) PNAS 108(50):20160-5. 

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