Kim Lewis

Kim Lewis



Ph.D., Biochemistry, Moscow University, Moscow, USSR
B.Sc., Biology, Moscow University, Moscow, USSR

Area(s) of Expertise

Molecular Microbiology

Research Interests

The focus of my research is on antimicrobial drug tolerance and drug discovery. Microorganisms produce persister cells, which are dormant variants that are highly tolerant to killing by all known antibiotics. Persisters are largely responsible for relapsing chronic infections caused by biofilms. Using transcriptome analysis, cell sorting and whole genome sequencing we are identifying genes responsible for persister formation. Both drug tolerance and conventional drug resistance require development of new antibiotics, and our discovery efforts include screening compounds from previously “uncultured” species of microorganisms, and high-throughput screening for compounds with novel mode of action.

Lab Website



306C Mugar Life Sciences Building

New research opens the door for treatment of relapsing bacterial infections

A new discovery by University Distinguished Professor Kim Lewis and his colleagues could advance customized treatments for people with relapsing bacterial infections.

Researchers’ discovery may explain difficulty in treating Lyme disease

A research team led by University Distinguished Professor Kim Lewis presents in a new paper that it has identified drug-tolerant persister cells in the bacterium that causes Lyme disease. The researchers also present a promising approach to potentially eradicating this and other infections.

Newly discovered antibiotic kills pathogens without resistance

Born from soil, the novel compound made possible by Northeastern researchers’ pioneering work is making headlines around the world and receiving applause from the science community.