Professor, Biodesign Center for Immunotherapy, Vaccines and Virotherapy
Cheryl Nickerson studies the effects of biomechanical forces on living cells (microbial and human), how this response is related to normal cellular homeostasis or infectious disease, and its translation to clinical applications. She and her lab have developed several innovative model systems to study these processes including 3-D organotypic models of human tissues that mimic the structure and function of in vivo tissues and their application to study the host-pathogen interaction that leads to infectious disease.
Nickerson and her research team also investigate the response of microbial pathogens to biomechanical forces they encounter in the infected host, as well as in the microgravity environment of spaceflight. Her research has flown on numerous NASA Shuttle missions, the International Space Station, and continues on SpaceX flight experiments.