College of Science and Health > Faculty & Staff > Faculty A-Z > Joanna Brooke

Joanna S. Brooke

  • Professor, Microbiology
  • ​PhD       ​​
  • Biological Sciences
  • (773) 325-1161
  • ​McGowan North, Room 203       
Classes Taught
  • Topics in Medical Bacteriology (BIO 347/447)
  • Microbial Ecology (BIO 320/420)
  • Microbiology (BIO 210)
  • Principles of Biotechnology (BIO 220)
  • Biology Senior Capstone Seminar (BIO 395)
  • Student Laboratory Instruction (BIO 302)
  • General Biology (BIO 191)
  • Introduction to Biology for Non-science majors (BIO 155)
Research Interests

Brooke's research examines infectious diseases in humans. Currently, there are two research tracks in her laboratory. 

The first track investigates the molecular mechanisms of an emerging worldwide opportunistic multidrug-resistant bacterial pathogen, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia. This bacterium is ubiquitous in nature and is commonly associated with respiratory infections in humans. Brooke is interested in looking at the genes of this organism and how they contribute to its ability to cause infection in humans. This bacterium is associated with a significant fatality: case ratio in susceptible individuals with compromised immune systems. A significant feature of this organism is its ability to form bacterial films (biofilms) on living and non-living surfaces. Biofilms of infectious bacteria are difficult to remove and can act as sources of infection. Current work in her laboratory explores how specific genes of S. maltophilia influence its formation of these films.

The second track of research investigates the presence of potentially harmful bacteria in the environment.

Select Publications

Malinowski, A.M., McClarty, B.M., Robinson, C., Spear, W., Sanchez, M., Sparkes, T.C., and Brooke, J.S. 2017. Polysorbate 80 and polymyxin B inhibit Stenotrophomonas maltophilia biofilm. Diagnostic Microbiology and Infectious Disease, 87(2):154-156.

Brooke, J.S.  2014. New strategies against Stenotrophomonas maltophilia: a serious worldwide intrinsically drug-resistant opportunistic pathogen. Expert Review of Anti-infective Therapy, 12(1):1-4.

Brooke, J.S.  2012. Stenotrophomonas maltophilia: an emerging global opportunistic pathogen.  Clinical Microbiology Reviews.  25:2-41.