Ausubel, Fred

Phone: 617-726-5968


Frederick M. Ausubel is Professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School and the Ernst Winnacker Distinguished Investigator in the Department of Molecular Biology at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Ausubel received his B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Illinois in 1966 and his Ph.D. in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1972. Formerly, he was Assistant and Associate Professor in the Department of Cellular and Developmental Biology at Harvard University.
Dr. Ausubel’s scientific work concerns host-microbe interactions. In the 1970s and 1980s, his laboratory worked on the molecular basis of symbiotic nitrogen fixation, the process by which legumes, in concert with a bacterial symbiont, convert atmospheric nitrogen into ammonia. Currently, the laboratory is investigating microbial pathogenesis and host defense in the plant Arabidopsis thaliana and the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. The laboratory has also adopted a genomics approach to study virulence in the opportunistic bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa strain PA14, which remarkably is a “multi-host” pathogen of both plants and animals. The laboratory is particularly interested in those aspects of pathogenesis and the host innate immune response that have been conserved in evolution.
Dr. Ausubel was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1994, the American Academy of Microbiology in 2002, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2003. In addition to serving on a variety of editorial boards, Dr. Ausubel is founding editor of the widely-read Current Protocols in Molecular Biology.

Selected Publications (from total of 277)


Liu S, Bartnikas LM, Volko SM, Ausubel FM, Tang D
Mutation of the Glucosinolate Biosynthesis Enzyme Cytochrome P450 83A1 Monooxygenase Increases Camalexin Accumulation and Powdery Mildew Resistance.
Front Plant Sci. 2016;7:227 - PMID: 26973671 - PMCID: PMC4774424
Kim W, Fricke N, Conery AL, Fuchs BB, Rajamuthiah R, Jayamani E, Vlahovska PM, Ausubel FM, Mylonakis E
NH125 kills methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus persisters by lipid bilayer disruption.
Future Med Chem. 2016;8(3):257-69 - PMID: 26910612 - PMCID: PMC4976882
Dolla NK, Chen C, Larkins-Ford J, Rajamuthiah R, Jagadeesan S, Conery AL, Ausubel FM, Mylonakis E, Bremner JB, Lewis K, Kelso MJ
On the Mechanism of Berberine-INF55 (5-Nitro-2-phenylindole) Hybrid Antibacterials.
Aust J Chem. 2016;67:1471-1480 - PMID: 26806960 - PMCID: PMC4720975
Rajamuthiah R, Jayamani E, Majed H, Conery AL, Kim W, Kwon B, Fuchs BB, Kelso MJ, Ausubel FM, Mylonakis E
Antibacterial properties of 3-(phenylsulfonyl)-2-pyrazinecarbonitrile.
Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2015;25(22):5203-7 - PMID: 26459212 - PMCID: PMC4718707
Cervone F, Ausubel FM, Lorenzo G
Enhancing immunity by engineering DAMPs.
Oncotarget. 2015;6(30):28523-4 - PMID: 26387132 - PMCID: PMC4745668
Haney CH, Ausubel FM
MICROBIOME. Plant microbiome blueprints.
Science. 2015;349(6250):788-9 - PMID: 26293938
Groen SC, Humphrey PT, Chevasco D, Ausubel FM, Pierce NE, Whiteman NK
Pseudomonas syringae enhances herbivory by suppressing the reactive oxygen burst in Arabidopsis.
J Insect Physiol. 2015;84:90-102 - PMID: 26205072 - PMCID: PMC4721946
Rajamuthiah R, Jayamani E, Conery AL, Fuchs BB, Kim W, Johnston T, Vilcinskas A, Ausubel FM, Mylonakis E
A Defensin from the Model Beetle Tribolium castaneum Acts Synergistically with Telavancin and Daptomycin against Multidrug Resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
PLoS One. 2015;10(6):e0128576 - PMID: 26062137 - PMCID: PMC4465704
Kim W, Conery AL, Rajamuthiah R, Fuchs BB, Ausubel FM, Mylonakis E
Identification of an Antimicrobial Agent Effective against Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Persisters Using a Fluorescence-Based Screening Strategy.
PLoS One. 2015;10(6):e0127640 - PMID: 26039584 - PMCID: PMC4454602
Haney CH, Samuel BS, Bush J, Ausubel FM
Associations with rhizosphere bacteria can confer an adaptive advantage to plants.
Nat Plants. 2015;1(6):ePub - PMID: 27019743 - PMCID: PMC4806546
Rajamuthiah R, Fuchs BB, Conery AL, Kim W, Jayamani E, Kwon B, Ausubel FM, Mylonakis E
Repurposing Salicylanilide Anthelmintic Drugs to Combat Drug Resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
PLoS One. 2015;10(4):e0124595 - PMID: 25897961 - PMCID: PMC4405337
Benedetti M, Pontiggia D, Raggi S, Cheng Z, Scaloni F, Ferrari S, Ausubel FM, Cervone F, De Lorenzo G
Plant immunity triggered by engineered in vivo release of oligogalacturonides, damage-associated molecular patterns.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015;112(17):5533-8 - PMID: 25870275 - PMCID: PMC4418913
Cheng Z, Li JF, Niu Y, Zhang XC, Woody OZ, Xiong Y, Djonovi? S, Millet Y, Bush J, McConkey BJ, Sheen J, Ausubel FM
Pathogen-secreted proteases activate a novel plant immune pathway.
Nature. 2015;521(7551):213-6 - PMID: 25731164 - PMCID: PMC4433409
Iscla I, Wray R, Blount P, Larkins-Ford J, Conery AL, Ausubel FM, Ramu S, Kavanagh A, Huang JX, Blaskovich MA, Cooper MA, Obregon-Henao A, Orme I, Tjandra ES, Stroeher UH, Brown MH, Macardle C, van Holst N, Ling Tong C, Slattery AD, Gibson CT, Raston CL, Boulos RA
A new antibiotic with potent activity targets MscL.
J Antibiot (Tokyo). 2015;68(7):453-62 - PMID: 25649856 - PMCID: PMC4430313
Kirienko NV, Ausubel FM, Ruvkun G
Mitophagy confers resistance to siderophore-mediated killing by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015;112(6):1821-6 - PMID: 25624506 - PMCID: PMC4330731