Joshua Leitao


I am gay and I am a laboratory manager & microbiology research assistant II.//

I am gay, and I am a microbiologist working at Brown University as a Laboratory Manager and Research Assistant II. Initially, I gained my scientific training from Roger Williams University as a double major in biology and chemistry, minor in public health, and certificate in biotechnology. As an undergrad, I worked in a lab investigating the inhibition of a parasite’s enzyme (EhAHD2) to identify new pharmacological treatments for the disease Amebiasis. Thereafter, I completed a master’s program in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology (MMI) at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. I found myself drawn to studying the host immune evasion mechanisms employed by the parasite Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent of human African trypanosomiasis. Subsequently, I was hired as a protein biochemistry and crystallization associate at the Slaoui Center for Vaccines Research (GSK). I worked in the Vaccine Design and Characterization Department designing antigens for two novel vaccine candidates against Cytomegalovirus (CMV) and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV). Currently, I work in the Department of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, and Biochemistry (MCB) at Brown. I am leading projects investigating the regulation of autophagy via genetic and pharmacological approaches in C. elegans with implications of treating Alzheimer’s disease.