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Karen Guillemin


  • Fellow
  • Humans & the Microbiome




Karen Guillemin studies how host-microbe interactions shape animal development and microbial community assembly. Her work explores how bacterial secreted products influence programs of proliferation and maturation in the intestinal epithelium, the innate immune system, and the pancreas. In parallel, her research explores how bacteria sense, navigate, and interact with host tissues. Her research group uses several gnotobiotic animal models for these studies, including zebrafish. Her group’s live imagining studies in zebrafish reveal how bacterial dynamics in the vertebrate intestine shape microbiota composition and host tissue responses.


  • Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, 2016
  • R.E. Dyer Lectureship, 2012
  • NIDDK 60th Anniversary, 2010

Relevant Publications

  • Schlomann, B. H., Wiles, T. J., Wall, E. S., Guillemin, K., & Parthasarathy, R. (2019). Sublethal antibiotics collapse gut bacterial populations by enhancing aggregation and expulsion. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. doi:10.1073/pnas.1907567116
  • Robinson, C. D., Klein, H. S., Murphy, K. D., Parthasarathy, R., Guillemin, K., & Bohannan, B. J. M. (2018). Experimental bacterial adaptation to the zebrafish gut reveals a primary role for immigration. PLoS Biol, 16(12), e2006893. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.2006893
  • Rolig, A. S., Sweeney, E. G., Kaye, L. E., DeSantis, M. D., Perkins, A., Banse, A. V., . . . Guillemin, K. (2018). A bacterial immunomodulatory protein with lipocalin-like domains facilitates host-bacteria mutualism in larval zebrafish. Elife, 7. doi:10.7554/eLife.37172
  • Rolig, A. S., Mittge, E. K., Ganz, J., Troll, J. V., Melancon, E., Wiles, T. J., . . . Guillemin, K. (2017). The enteric nervous system promotes intestinal health by constraining microbiota composition. PLoS Biol, 15(2), e2000689. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.2000689
  • Hill, J. H., Franzosa, E. A., Huttenhower, C., & Guillemin, K. (2016). A conserved bacterial protein induces pancreatic beta cell expansion during zebrafish development. Elife, 5. doi:10.7554/eLife.20145

Support Us

CIFAR is a registered charitable organization supported by the governments of Canada, Alberta and Quebec, as well as foundations, individuals, corporations and Canadian and international partner organizations.

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