Dr. Gomes Neto’s group combines research areas such as veterinary epidemiology and microbiology to identify populationbased patterns of spread of foodborne pathogens, in addition to seeking to identify actionable gut microbiome-based signatures of colonization resistance against such pathogens, aiming at improving food safety at the pre-harvest stage in swine and poultry production systems. In brief, Dr. Gomes Neto’s research will combine the use of 1) epidemiological observational studies and whole-genome sequencing (WGS) analysis of foodborne pathogen populations; 2) in vivo (pigs and poultry) infectious studies to assess survival and persistence in the gastrointestinal tract, in addition to interactions with the resident microbiota; 3) in vitro phenotyping for food safety-associated traits in genotypes/strains that are epidemiologically relevant across foodborne pathogens; and 4) standard microbiological techniques to isolate and characterize putative probiotics and symbiotic approaches for pigs and poultry.
Therefore, here are the topics of research that are in development by the group:
- Use of whole-genome population mining approaches to track genotypes and map pan-genomic composition across foodborne pathogen populations to discover food safetyassociated traits
- Identification and characterization of host-associated probiotic strains (symbiotic strategies) capable of enhancing colonization resistance against clinically/epidemiologically relevant genotypes of foodborne pathogens
- Mapping of genetic determinants of complex or quantitative traits, such as antimicrobial resistance and/or physiological traits associated with the spread and persistence of emergent multi-drug (MDR) lineages of foodborne pathogens, or the engraftment of health-promoting probiotic strains in the gastrointestinal tract of pigs and poultry
Areas of Expertise:
- Foodborne pathogen genomic epidemiology
- Gastrointestinal colonization resistance to foodborne pathogens