Sarah Lucas completed a B.S. degree in Microbiology with a minor in Biochemistry at Penn State in 2010. Following graduation she became a member of the Genomic Medicine and Infectious Disease groups at J. Craig Venter institute, under the mentorship of Dr. Karen Nelson and Dr. Bill Nierman. JCVI is where she realized her passion for studying microbial communities.
Sarah earned her Ph.D. in 2020 from the Microbiology, Immunology and Cancer Biology multidisciplinary graduate program at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. She was advised by Dr. Ryan Hunter in the Department of Microbiology & Immunology at UMN. Her thesis explored the use of genomic and bioinformatic methods to characterize microbial communities associated with chronic infections in the upper respiratory system. She coupled this with data-driven classical microbiology experiments to explore bacterial community interactions, particularly between mucin-degrading anaerobes and Staphylococcus aureus.
Currently, Sarah is a postodoctoral research associate in Pat Schloss’s lab at the University of Michigan. Sarah is particularly keen to explore the diversity of anaerobic bacteria in chronic infections, and their role in microbial communities associated with states of health and disease in the human body.
When she isn’t in the lab, Sarah can be found hiking, biking, practicing home fermentation, and caring for a multitude of houseplants.
PhD in Microbiology, Immunology and Cancer Biology (Current), 2020
University of Minnesota
BS in Microbiology, 2010
Pennsylvania State University