Dr. Tracie Delgado

Hello….

Welcome to my webpage.  A little about me…I was born and raised in Los Angeles California in the city of Bell, a predominately Latino community.  I went on to UCLA for undergrad where I developed a huge passion for science, Christ and UCLA football.  During my years at UCLA I did molecular biology, cancer biology and herpesvirus research.  After UCLA, I moved to Seattle Washington to pursue my PhD degree in Microbiology at the University of Washington (UW).  My thesis project aimed at determining how Kaposi’s Sarcoma Herpesvirus (KSHV) causes cancer (see research interests section).  While at the UW, I was actively involved in science outreach and education.  I was president of the Society of Advancement of Chicano’s and Native American’s in the Sciences (SACNAS) University of Washington chapter and actively participated in various K-12 science outreach events in the greater Seattle area and beyond.  After graduating from UW with my PhD, I joined the Northwest University faculty (Fall 2011).  My primary areas of teaching are in cell and molecular biology.  I also have a BSL-2 (biosafety level 2) lab at NU where I study gamma herpesviruses which cause cancer (see research section).

I enjoy teaching, virus research, singing, playing piano and guitar, worship leading, baking, watching UCLA football, talking about the wonders of science, eating chocolate and desserts, cheesecake factory, karaoke, riding roller coasters, song writing, bunnies, gospel music, photography, spiritual conversations and playing with snow.

In 2011, I  married my husband, Dr. Brian Stuck (D.C). We also have a toddler named Edgar (2015), a Netherland dwarf rabbit named Orange Julius and a yellow Labrador Retriever named Daisy.

(Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.)
When our days become dreary with low-hovering clouds and our nights become darker than a thousand midnights, lets remember that there is a great benign power in the universe whose name is God and He is able to make a way out of no way, and transform dark yesterdays into bright tomorrows.

 

Education

B.S.  Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics
University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA), 2006

Ph.D. Microbiology
University of Washington, 2011

Courses Taught

• General Biology I (SCIE 2053)
• General Biology I Lab (SCIE 2051)
• Cell Biology (SCIE 3403)
• Cell Biology Lab (SCIE 3401)
• Genetics and Society (SCIE 2452)
• Principles in Biology (SCIE 1103)
• Principles in Biology Lab (SCIE 1101)
• Genetics (SCIE 3143)
• Genetics Lab (SCIE 3141)
• Biochemistry (SCIE 4423)
• Biochemistry Lab (SCIE 4421)

Research Interests

Viruses are intracellular parasites which lack their own inherent metabolism. Viral metabolic alteration of host cells, particularly glucose and fatty acid metabolism, has recently become an important topic in the field of virology. It has now become apparent that these metabolic alterations are critical for the viral lifecycle. Recent data shows that viruses may alter host cell metabolic machinery in order to create more energy (ATP), amino acids, lipids and nucleotide materials necessary to replicate.

My research is focused on investigating the alteration of host cell metabolism by oncogenic gamma herpesviruses.  Gamma herpesviruses are associated with lymphoproliferative diseases and can transform cells in vivo. Previously, I investigated how the gamma human herpesvirus, Kapsoi’s Sarcoma Herpesvirus (KSHV), alters host cell metabolism and may predispose host cells to tumorgenesis.  I was one of the first to examine the metabolome following virus infection, revealing KSHV infection of endothelial cells alters host cell glucose and lipid metabolism pathways. Additionally, my data showed that blocking viral induced glycolysis or lipid synthesis using pharmocological inhibitors results in cell death of latently infected cells and decreases virus production during lytic replication.  Since I published this data, several other viruses have been shown to alter global host metabolic pathways, revealing that viruses implement distinct metabolic programs following infection to support their life cycle.

In my laboratory at Northwest University, I study Murine Herpesvirus 68 (MHV-68), a gamma mouse herpesvirus biologically related to KSHV.  MHV-68 is a natural pathogen of wild rodents that infects endothelial cells and persists in B-lymphocytes in a latent form. MHV-68 provides a genetically tractable system which can be used as a model to understand how viruses alter host cell metabolic pathways.  Currently, my lab is studying if MHV-68 alters glucose and lipid metabolism pathways in host cells during lytic replication in vitro.  The discovery that oncogenic viruses can alter host cell metabolism is important to both virologists and cancer biologists.  It has been estimated that ~15-20% of cancer has a viral etiology. Therefore, this research would impact a larger academic community than just virologists. Alteration of host cell metabolism by viruses may be universal and therefore provides a new and attractive field of study as we further explore this once overlooked aspect of the virus-host interaction.

In the Fall of 2015, my dream to create the “Pathway to Undergraduate Research Excellence (PURE) Scholars” program at NU became a reality.  The overall mission of PURE is to foster self-efficacy in the STEM fields and equip our students to obtain advanced degrees in the sciences.  All the experiments in my lab are done by undergraduates in the PURE program.

Grants

M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust – Natural Sciences Grant
Award Amount = $79,000
Award Period = Sep 2014-Aug 2017
Grant Title = Alteration of host cell glucose and lipid metabolism by Murine Herpesvirus 68

 

Publications

Delgado, T., Sanchez, EL., Camarda, R and Lagunoff, M. Global Metabolic Profiling of Infection by an Oncogenic Virus: KSHV Induces and Requires Lipogenesis for Survival of Latent Infection. PLoS Pathog. 2012 Aug;8(8):e1002866.

Delgado, T., Carroll, P.A, Punjabi, A.S., Margineantu, D., Hockenbery, D.M and Lagunoff, M. (2010). Induction of the Warburg effect by Kaposi’s Sarcoma Herpesvirus is required for the maintenance of latently infected endothelial cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 107(23):10696-701

Tracy R. Daniels, Patrick P. Ng, Tracie Delgado, Maureen R. Lynch, Gary Schiller, Gustavo Helguera, and Manuel L. Penichet. (2007). Conjugation of an anti–transferrin receptor IgG3-avidin fusion protein with biotinylated saporin results insignificant enhancement of its cytotoxicity against malignant hematopoietic cells. Mol Cancer Ther. 6(11):2995-3008

Daniels, TR., Delgado T., Helguera, G., Penichet, ML. (2006). The transferrin receptor part II: Targeted delivery of therapeutic agents into cancer cells. Clin Immunol. 121(2):159-76. Review.

Daniels, TR., Delgado T., Rodriguez, JA., Helguera, G., Penichet, ML. (2006). The transferrin receptor part I: Biology and targeting with cytotoxic antibodies for the treatment of cancer. Clin Immunol. 121(2):144-58. Review.