Publications & News


Molecular epidemiology of Marek’s disease virus in central Pennsylvania, USA.
Bell AS, Kennedy DA, Jones MJ, Cairns CL, Pandey U, Dunn PA, Szpara ML, Read AF – Virus Evolution [In press] [PDF]

Herpes simplex virus (HSV) disease management and diagnostics in the era of high throughput sequencing.
Pandey U and Szpara ML – Clinical Microbiology Newsletter [In press]

Genotypic and phenotypic diversity within the neonatal HSV-2 population.
Akhtar LN, Bowen CD, Renner DW, Pandey U, Della Fera AN, Kimberlin DW, Prichard MN, Whitley RJ, Weitzman MW, Szpara ML – In review; available as a bioRxiv preprint [DOI:]

Comparison of HSV-1 strains circulating in Finland demonstrates the uncoupling of whole-genome relatedness and phenotypic outcomes of viral infection.
Bowen CD, Paavilainen H, Renner DW, Palomäki J, Lehtinen J, Vuorinen T, Norberg P, Hukkanen V, Szpara ML – In review; available as a bioRxiv preprint [DOI:]


Genome-wide surveillance of genital HSV-1 from multiple anatomic sites over time.
Shipley MM, Renner DW, Ott M, Bloom DC, Koelle DM, Johnston C, Szpara ML – Journal of Infectious Diseases [DOI:] [PDF]

Expression of the purine biosynthetic enzyme phosphoribosyl formylglycinamidine synthase (FGAMS) in neurons.
Mangold CA, Yao PJ, Du M, Freeman WM, Benkovic SJ, Szpara ML – Journal of Neurochemistry  [DOI:]  [PDF]

Impacts of genome-wide analyses on our understanding of human herpesvirus diversity and evolution.
Renner DW and Szpara ML – Journal of Virology  [DOI:]  [PDF]


Inferred father-to-son transmission of herpes simplex virus results in near-perfect preservation of viral genome identity and in vivo phenotypes.
Pandey U, Renner DW, Thompson RL, Szpara ML, Sawtell NM – Scientific Reports [DOI:] [PDF]

Differentiated SH-SY5Y human cells provide a reductionist model of HSV-1 neurotropism.
Shipley MM, Mangold CA, Kuny CV, Szpara ML – Journal of Virology [DOI:] [PDF]

Experimental Oral Herpes Simplex Virus-1 (HSV-1) Co-infection in Simian Immunodeficiency Virus (SIV)-Infected Rhesus Macaques.
Aravantinou M, Mizenina O, Calenda G, Kenney J, Frank I, Lifson JD, Szpara M, Jing L, Koelle DM, Teleshova N, Grasperge B, Blanchard J, Gettie A, Martinelli E, Derby N – Frontiers in Microbiology [DOI:] [PDF]

A phylogenomic analysis of Marek’s disease virus reveals independent paths to virulence in Eurasia and North America.
Trimpert J, Groenke N, Jenckel M, He S, Kunec D, Szpara ML, Spatz SJ, Osterrieder N, McMahon DP – Evolutionary Applications [DOI:] [PDF]

A model of genital herpes simplex virus Type 1 infection in Rhesus Macaques.
Aravantinou M, Frank I, Arrode-Bruses G, Szpara M, Grasperge B, Blanchard J, Gettie A, Derby N, Martinelli E – Journal of Medical Primatology [DOI:] [PDF]


DNA from dust: comparative genomics of large DNA viruses in field surveillance samples
Pandey U, Bell AS, Renner D, Kennedy DA, Shreve J, Cairns CL, Jones MJ, Dunn PA, Read AF,  Szpara ML – mSphere [DOI:] [PDF]

Viral forensic genomics reveals the relatedness of classic herpes simplex virus strains KOS, KOS63, and KOS79
Bowen CD, Renner DW, Shreve JT, Tafuri Y, PayneKM, Dix RD, Kinchington PR, Gatherer D, Szpara ML – Virology (Elsevier)  [DOI:] [PDF]

Differentiation of the SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cell line
Shipley MM, Mangold CA, Szpara ML – Journal of Visualized Experiments  [DOI:] [PDF] [Movie]


VirAmp: A Galaxy-based viral genome assembly pipeline
Wan Y, Renner DW, Albert I, Szpara ML – GigaScience [DOI:] [PDF]

Rapid genome assembly and comparison decodes intra-strain variation in human alpha-herpesviruses
Parsons LR, Tafuri YR, Shreve JT, Bowen CD, Shipley MM, Enquist LW, Szpara ML – mBio [DOI:] [PDF]


Genome sequence of the anterograde-spread defective herpes simplex virus 1 strain MacIntyre
Szpara ML, Tafuri YR, Parsons L, Shreve JT, Engel EA, Enquist LW – Genome Announcements [DOI:] [PDF]

Isolation of Herpes Simplex Virus Nucleocapsid DNA
ML Szpara – Methods in Molecular Biology [online book chapter link:] [PDF]


Evolution and diversity in human herpes simplex virus genomes
ML Szpara, D Gatherer, A Ochoa, B Greenbaum, A Dolan, RJ Bowden, LW Enquist, M Legendre, AJ Davison – Journal of Virology [DOI:] [PDF]


A wide extent of inter-strain diversity in virulent and vaccine strains of alphaherpesviruses
ML Szpara, YR Tafuri, L Parsons, SR Shamim, KJ Verstrepen, M Legendre, LW Enquist – PLoS Pathogens [DOI:] [PDF]

Herpes simplex virus 1 pUL34 plays a critical role in cell-to-cell spread of virus in addition to its role in virus replication
AC Haugo, ML Szpara, L Parsons, LW Enquist, RJ Roller – Journal of Virology [DOI:] [PDF]

Preparation of viral DNA from nucleocapsids
ML Szpara, YR Tafuri, LW Enquist – Journal of Visualized Experiments [DOI:] [PDF] [Movie]


Sequence variability in clinical and laboratory isolates of herpes simplex virus 1 reveals new mutations
ML Szpara, L Parsons, LW Enquist – Journal of Virology [DOI:  ] [PDF] [Data website]

A common neuronal response to alphaherpesvirus infection
ML Szpara, O Kobiler, LW Enquist – Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology [DOI:] [PDF]


Fluorescence-based monitoring of in vivo neural activity using a circuit-tracing pseudorabies virus
AE Granstedt, ML Szpara, B Kuhn, SS Wang, LW Enquist – PLoS One [DOI:] [PDF]

Compartmented neuron cultures for directional infection by alpha herpesviruses
D Curanović, TH Ch’ng, M Szpara, L Enquist – Current Protocols in Cell Biology [DOI:] [PDF]


Analysis of gene expression during neurite outgrowth and regeneration
ML Szpara, K Vranizan, YC Tai, CS Goodman, TP Speed, J Ngai – BMC Neuroscience [DOI:] [PDF]


Regulation of pontine neurite morphology by target-derived signals
SK Hansen, ML Szpara, TA Serafini – Molecular Brain Research [DOI:] [PDF]


Moriah will be giving a keynote address at the 44th Annual International Herpesvirus Workshop (IHW) in Knoxville, TN. The annual meetings of IHW and the American Society for Virology are overlapping in dates but not in location, making it a challenge to partake of the exciting science at both.

Moriah will be giving an invited talk at the upcoming Gordon Research Conference (GRC) on Viruses & Cells. Julie Pfeiffer and Britt Glaunsinger have organized a great program!

– The Colorado Alphaherpesvirus Latency Symposium (CALS) is on in May, and is already over-subscribed. Moriah and Colleen Mangold will be there to share in the exciting science at CALS.

Molly Rathbun will be giving one talk in the Virology@PSU seminar series, and another in the Wartik Genomics seminar series. Go Molly!

Chris Bowen will be giving a seminar in the Virology@PSU seminar series.

- So excited to have our Finland HSV1 collaboration with Veijo Hukkanen accepted for publication! Congrats to Chris Bowen & Daniel Renner for leading our lab’s efforts, and Henrik Paavilainen for leading the way on the Finland side.


Mackenzie Shipley received her PhD at the Winter Commencement of Penn State University — congratulations on your new degree, Mackenzie! Mackenzie will soon be a postdoc in Dr. Julie Overbaugh‘s lab at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

Chris Bowen won BMB’s 2018 Staff Excellence Award for his contributions to the department and the Eberly College of Science! BMB wrote a nice article about Chris & how his efforts support our lab & others. Congratulations Chris, and thank you for all that you do!

Moriah gave a keynote talk at the 13th Mini-Herpesvirus Workshop (MHW) in Hamburg, Germany. The MHW was co-sponsored by the Heinrich Pette Institute & the Robert Koch Institute. Thanks to the co-organizers, Wolfram Brune & Sebastian Voigt, for putting together a great meeting!

– During her visit to Germany for the MHW, Moriah gave a seminar at the Hannover Medical School (Medizinische Hochschule Hannover), and got to visit with Beate Sodeik, Abel Viejo-Borbolla, and many other great science colleagues. Congrats to the MHH team on their recent success with the “RESIST” research award from Germany’s Excellence Strategy funding program!

– After the MHW, Moriah gave a seminar at the Freie Universität Berlin‘s Institute of Virology. Thanks to my hosts Jakob Trimpert (of the Osterrieder lab) & Benedikt Kaufer — two great labs with exciting science underway. It was also great to have a preview of the site of 2020 International Herpesvirus Workshop!

Moriah gave a seminar at the University College London (UCL)’s Division of Infection and Immunity. Many thanks to Judy Breuer for hosting my visit, sharing great science, and inspiring new collaborations between our labs!!

– Molly Rathbun did a great job with her 3rd yer seminar in the Biochemistry, Microbiology, & Molecular Biology (BMMB) graduate program. Nicely done!

Mackenzie Shipley gave a stellar presentation & successfully defended her PhD on August 24 — kudos Mackenzie! Thanks to her thesis committee of John Wills, Melissa Rolls, Dick Frisque, & Lorraine Santy for guidance & good questions all along the way.

– Molly Rathbun successfully completed her comprehensive exam this month as well — congrats Molly! We are looking forward to all the exciting science & exploration that lies ahead.

- Moriah gave a talk on our neonatal HSV-2 research in the HSV Satellite of the 43rd Annual International Herpesvirus Workshop in Vancouver, Canada. Chad Kuny, Mackenzie Shipley, and Moriah presented a total of four posters at the Workshop. We thoroughly enjoyed the great science at IHW, & seeing so many of our collaborators there!

Colleen MangoldChris Bowen, and our collaborator-postdoc Lisa Akhtar all gave talks at the American Society for Virology (ASV) Annual meeting in Maryland. Molly Rathbun presented a poster, and Moriah chaired the opening session. It was a great meeting, with so much to learn across the whole spectrum of virology.

Colleen Mangold gave a great talk on her new project on neuronal responses to HSV-1 infection, at the University of Pennsylvania Herpesvirus: Pathogenesis & Cancer Symposium on June 1. The whole lab takes a road trip to attend the day-long U. Penn symposium every year.

-Moriah gave a talk at the Spear Colloquium in honor of Dr. Patricia Spear, at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, Department of Microbiology-Immunology in Chicago, IL. It was an honor to meet Patricia, one of the founding members of our field!

Mackenzie Shipley gave a talk & a poster, and Utsav Pandey gave a poster, at the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) Microbe 2018 meeting in Atlanta, GA. Kudos to both of our senior PhD graduate students for their excellent research!

Moriah gave an invited talk & Daniel Renner a poster at the 2018 Virus Genomics and Evolution meeting in Cambridge (UK). The meeting was held at the Wellcome Genome Campus, heart of an amazing amount of progress in sequencing, genomics, and computational biology.

Colleen Mangold gave at talk at the Center for Molecular Investigation of Neurological Disorders (CMIND) Annual Retreat here at University Park. Kudos, Colleen!

- Utsav Pandey received his PhD at the Spring Commencement of Penn State University — congratulations on your new degree, Utsav! Utsav is now a Fellow in a two-year Medical Microbiology and Public Health Fellowship program at the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA), in conjunction with the University of Southern California (USC).

Colleen Mangold gave a talk for Virology@PSU, on her new neuronal transcriptome project. It was a good preview for her upcoming talks at the University of Pennsylvania & ASV Annual meeting!

Moriah gave a talk & Mackenzie Shipley gave a poster at the 2018 Colorado Alphaherpesvirus Latency Symposium (CALS) in Vail, CO. It was Mackenzie’s first meeting at CALS, and she agrees that the small format provides a great opportunity to talk with colleagues and share new science. Thank you to Randy Cohrs, Nick Baird, & Maria Nagel for organizing this!

– Mackenzie Shipley returned to her alma mater, Hartwick College, to give an Invited Alumni Seminar. Good outreach & mentorship of future graduate students!

Mackenzie Shipley gave a Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics (CIDD) Graduate Student Seminar here at PSU. Each student or postdoc has an opportunity to do this once during their training here. Mackenzie did a great job!

Molly Rathbun gave a poster at the 2018 Penn State Institute for CyberScience (ICS) Symposium. Thanks Molly!

- Utsav Pandey successfully defended his PhD thesis — first graduate of the Szpara lab! He will be accepting a Clinical Diagnostic Microbiology Fellowship in California this July. Read more about these here, at the ASM Committee on Postgraduate Education Programs (CPEP). Thanks to Utsav’s thesis committee for all of their efforts along the way: Andrew Read, Istvan Albert, Tony Schmitt, & Tim Meredith. Congratulations on all of your achievements, Utsav!!!

Molly Rathbun gave her first-ever presentation for Virology@PSU, and presented her ideas for her future thesis. Good practice for her comprehensive examination in the year ahead!

Moriah gave a talk about our new neonatal HSV research at the Viruses 2018—Breakthroughs in Viral Replication meeting in Barcelona, Spain. You can see some photos at the MDPI Viruses blog post here. It’s was an excellent meeting!


- Colleen Mangold gave a talk in December for the Molecular Virology super-group, which has grown to include the labs of Craig Cameron, Susan Hafenstein, Joyce JoseSuresh Kuchipudi, Tony Schmitt, Troy Sutton, & our lab.

– Chad Kuny gave an excellent talk for the Virology@PSU seminar series. It’s been just over a year since Chad joined the lab — Kudos Chad!

Mackenzie Shipley‘s paper on SH-SY5Y neuronal differentiation & HSV-1 infection is now published in final format at JVI! Congrats to Mackenzie, Colleen, and Chad!

– Molly Rathbun passed her candidacy exam — the first of several landmarks on the path to a PhD. Congrats Molly!

– Our fourth annual lab retreat at Raystown Lake was a success — lots of science & news to reflect on, and more to look forward to in the year ahead!

- A new paper with Utsav PandeyDaniel RennerRick Thompson (University of Cinncinnati), and Nancy Sawtell (Cincinnati Children’s Hospital) is accepted & published at Scientific Reports. Key highlight: This is the first-ever view of HSV-1 transmission in a family setting to include both genomic & in vivo phenotypic analyses. Congratulations Utsav and all for this accomplishment!

– An invited minireview on herpesvirus genomics by Daniel Renner and Moriah Szpara is now accepted & available online at the Journal of Virology!

– Moriah gave a talk for Merck’s Anti-Virals & Vaccines group in West Point, PA.

– Utsav Pandey gave a talk on his father-son virus comparison in the Virology@PSU seminar series.

– Moriah gave a talk at the Stony Brook University’s Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology. Thanks to Laurie Krug & the Krug lab for hosting a great visit!

-   A new paper by Mackenzie ShipleyColleen Mangold, and Chad Kuny is accepted & online at JVI. Key highlight: HSV-1 infection proceeds differently in terminally-differentiated neuronal cells, than in their undifferentiated precursors. Congratulations Mackenzie, Colleen, & Chad!

–   Mackenzie Shipley launched Virology@PSU for 2017-18, with a talk on our research collaboration with Dr. Christine Johnston (UW). Nice job, Mackenzie!

-  Moriah gave a talk at the University of California Berkeley’s department of Plant & Microbial Biology. Thanks Britt Glaunsinger for an excellent visit!

-  Moriah Szpara gave the Priscilla Schaffer Memorial Lecture at the International Herpesvirus Workshop (IHW) in Ghent, Belgium. Thanks to Herman Favoreel & Hans Nauwynck for organizing a great meeting! Moriah also organized a meeting on genomics methods, prior to the main meeting. Thank you to all the groups that participated in a very fruitful discussion.

–  Christian Thomas from Dillard University completed a summer research project in the lab, working with mentorship from Utsav Pandey. His visit was sponsored by Penn State’s Summer Research Opportunities Program (SROP). Christian did a great job with his final presenation!

Chad Kuny gave his first talk from new research in the Szpara lab, at the University of Pennsylvania’s 17th Annual Herpesvirus: Pathogenesis and Cancer Symposium. Way to go, Chad!

–  The lab was represented at the ASM Microbe meeting in New Orleans, with posters presented by Utsav Pandey (grad student) & Kokila Shankar (senior undergraduate). Kokila participated in the Microbiology Academy for Professional Development (MAPD) Workshop at ASM, as part of her winning a 2016 ASM Undergraduate Research Fellowship.

–  The lab was represented at the 2017 American Society for Virology (ASV) meeting in Madison, WI, with a short talk by Mackenzie Shipley. Great job, Mackenzie!

Moriah Szpara gave a talk at the Colorado Alphaherpesvirus Symposium (CALS).

– Our two senior undergraduates, Kokila Shankar & Chris Sharkey, have finished their Bachelor’s degrees! Kokila will be heading to graduate school and Chris to computational data science at Microsoft. Congratulations on your honors thesis Kokila (first in the lab!) and your computational manuscript draft Chris!

-  Utsav Pandey did a great job with a full-length (45 min) seminar in BMB‘s 4th year graduate student seminar series. Kudos, Utsav!

– Moriah Szpara gave a talk at the University of Chicago interdisciplinary PhD program in Genetics, Genomics & Systems Biology (GGSB).

– Chad Kuny did some great outreach at the “Ask a Scientist” table, as part of the Central PA People’s Climate Day. Thanks Chad!

-  Moriah Szpara gave a talk at the 9th Workshop in Virus Evolution, on our collaboration with Nancy Sawtell (Cincinnati Children’s Hospital) & Rick Thompson (University of Cinncinnati), which also involves Utsav Pandey & Daniel Renner.

-   Mackenzie Shipley did a great job with her full-length (45 min) seminar, as part of BMB‘s 4th year graduate student seminar series. Kudos, Mackenzie!


-   Molly Rathbun joins the lab as our newest graduate student, from the BMMB graduate program. Molly has a background in forensics. Congratulations to Molly for being selected for the CBIOS Training Grant program!

-   Chris Bowen gave a talk on our lab’s collaboration with Lynda Morrison, at the Penn State Intercampus Virology (PSIV) meeting — great job, Chris!

-   Utsav’s paper on the capture and comparison of herpesvirus genomes from dust and feather has been accepted at mSphere. Congratulations to UtsavDaniel, Andy Bell, David Kennedy, and the team from the Read lab that contributed to this accomplishment!

–   Colleen Mangold received a fellowship from the American Heart Association! She will be one of the Great Rivers Affiliate Winter 2016 Postdoctoral Fellows, with a two year award. Our colleagues Tony Huang, David Hughes, and Stephen Benkovic contributed to the process as co-sponsors. Congratulations Colleen!

–   Chad Kuny joined the lab as a postdoc, bringing his expertise with beta-herpesviruses and more recently in RNA virology. Welcome Chad!

–  Utsav gave a talk at the MCIBS and Pathobiology Summer Retreat, sharing his MDV genomics research with the new recruits.

-   Moriah Szpara was an invited speaker at the FASEB meeting on “Virus Structure and Assembly” from July 24‐29, in Colorado. Kudos to our colleague Rebecca Craven for her part in co-organizing this meeting.

–   Moriah Szpara presented Utsav’s research on MDV genome surveillance in the field, at the 11th International Symposium on Marek’s Disease and Avian Herpesviruses in France.

Mackenzie Shipley presented a short talk on her new research on herpesvirus infection of human neurons at the University of Pennsylvania symposium entitled Herpesviruses: Pathogenesis and Cancer on June 24. This year’s symposium honored the career of our colleague Dr. Jim Alwine.

–   Moriah Szpara presented a poster during the Viral Genomics and Evolution meeting at the Wellcome Genome Campus in the UK. Kudos to our colleague Judy Breuer for her role in co-organizing this.

-   Moriah Szpara chaired the 35th Annual Summer Symposium in Molecular Biology at the University Park campus, on the topic of Living with our Viromes. Kudos to all the lab members who chaired sessions, presented posters, hosted speakers and attendees, and helped make this a great event! The symposium took place May 24-25, 2016.

–  Congratulations to our undergraduate researcher Apoorva Talanki, on her recent graduation from Penn State!

– Moriah Szpara gave a talk about Mackenzie’s research at the Colorado Alphaherpesvirus Symposium (CALS).

- Congratulations to Kokila Shankar, on winning a 2016 ASM Undergraduate Research Fellowship! This will support her summer research project, and attendance of the ASM Microbe meeting next year.

–   Mackenzie Shipley presented her data on HSV infection of human neuronal cells at the April meeting of Virology@PSU.

-   Our video protocol on achieving full neuronal differentiation of human SH-SY5Y cells was published in JoVE. Congrats to Mackenzie Shipley and Colleen Mangold on putting this together!

–   Colleen Mangold presented on neuronal positioning via acoustofluidics at the February meeting of CMIND.

–   Utsav Pandey presented a summary of our MDV genomics collaboration with Andrew Read’s lab for the January meeting of Virology@PSU.

-   Mackenzie Shipley presented her data on HSV infection of human neuronal cells at CMIND.


-   Colleen Mangold gave an overview on her progress in acoustofluidics with Tony Huang’s lab for the December meeting of Virology@PSU.

–   We made the first announcement of speakers for the “Living with our Viromes” symposium that Moriah Szpara is chairing, along with a team of co-conveners from Virology@PSU.

-   Mackenzie Shipley gave her first ever hour-long seminar, in BMB‘s departmental graduate student seminar series. Well done!

–   The lab enjoyed a great day of cross-campus virology at the 2nd Penn State Intercampus Virology (PSIV) meeting. Over 60 people from labs spanning the University Park and Hershey College of Medicine campuses gathered for a day of science, networking, and talks by trainees. Colleen Mangold launched the day with her talk on acoustofluidics.

–   Congratulations to Kokila Shankar and Nathan Arnett, who each won a 2015-2016 Undergraduate Research Support Award from the Eberly College of Science!

-  Colleen Mangold presented her work with Tony Huang’s lab with a poster at Neuroscience 2015, the 45th annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.

–  Utsav Pandey gave his first ever full-length talk as a graduate student, in BMB‘s departmental graduate student seminar series. Nicely done!

–  Moriah Szpara highlighted all the great virology action at Penn State (see: Virology@PSU) during a CIDD lunch with PSU President Eric Barron.

–  Kokila Shankar & Chris Sharkey presented their research projects at the Fall 2015 Science Undergraduate Poster Exhibition.

-  Utsav Pandey reprised his MDV talk at the 2015 Northeastern Conference on Avian Diseases (NECAD).

–  Colleen Mangold gave a great talk on her work with Tony Huang’s lab at the annual retreat of Center for Molecular Investigation of Neurological Disorders (CMIND).

-  Mackenzie Shipley successfully completed her comprehensive exam as a BMMB graduate student! Congratulations!


–  Utsav PandeyMackenzie ShipleyDaniel Renner, & Moriah Szpara present new data at the International Herpesvirus Workshop (IHW) in Boise, ID. In addition to our four posters, Mackenzie’s abstract was selected for a travel award, and Utsav gave a talk in the Veterinary Herpesvirus Satellite Workshop.

–  Utsav Pandey successfully completed his comprehensive exam as a BMMB graduate student! Congratulations!

– Chris Bowen and Moriah Szpara present talks at the American Society for Virology (ASV) meeting in London, ON, Canada.

-  Utsav Pandey and Mackenzie Shipley give talks at the inaugural PSU Intercampus Virology meeting, at the Penn State Hershey campus. Nicely done! The meeting on June 9 was organized by our colleagues John Wills & Becky Craven. The next one will be in November 2016 at the University Park campus.

– Mackenzie Shipley wins the department’s Paul M. Althouse Outstanding TA Award this year! This was based on her efforts in Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 in the “Protein Purification & Enzymology” lab.

– Utsav Pandey gives his first public research talk at a University of Pennsylvania symposium entitled Herpesviruses: Pathogenesis and Cancer on June 2. This year’s symposium honored the career of our colleague Dr. Nigel Fraser.

– Welcome to our newest undergraduate members of the lab: Kokila Shankar & Apoorva Talanki!

-  Congrats to Colleen Mangold for winning a Huck Biotechnology Mini-grant, which will fund her confocal microscopy work at the Huck Microscopy & Cytometry Core Facility.

– Moriah Szpara gives a talk at the Colorado Alphaherpesvirus Symposium (CALS).

Daniel Renner gives a poster on VirAmp at the Great Lakes’ (GLBIO) meeting of the International Society for Computational Biology, at Purdue University.

– Congrats to our undergrads Nathan Arnett & Chris Sharkey on landing great summer interships. Nathan will be at the University of Pittsburgh Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP), and Chris has an internship at Humana.

-  VirAmp is published — our first web-based tool for virus assembly. Congrats Yinan & Daniel!

-  Moriah Szpara gave a talk at the 8th Workshop in Virus Evolution.

–  Our latest research is published in mBio — a lovely story about sister clones of various HSV strains.  The early stages of this project involved Lance Parsons and Yoly Tafuri, in Lynn Enquist’s lab at Princeton. The research was brought to fruition with the help of several members of the new team at PSU  — Jacob Shreve, Chris Bowen & Mackenzie Shipley. Nice teamwork!

– Congratulations to Mackenzie Shipley, on receiving an early registration abstract award for the International Herpesvirus Workshop in July 2015.

-  Utsav Pandey and Mackenzie Shipley advance to PhD candidacy in the Biochemistry, Microbiology, and Molecular Biology graduate program. Congratulations!

Moriah Szpara & Craig Cameron co-teach MICRB 415, also known as General Virology, this semester.


Utsav Pandey presents a talk for Virology@PSU.

Utsav Pandey and Mackenzie Shipley pass their candidacy exams in the Biochemistry, Microbiology, and Molecular Biology graduate program.

– The lab’s “case study” video goes live, as part of the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) entitled: Epidemics – the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases.

- Daniel Renner joins the lab as a computational scientist & bioinformatics specialist. Welcome Daniel!

– Nathan Arnett wins a 2014-2015 ECoS Undergraduate Research Support Award.

- Yinan Wan, our collaborator in Istvan Albert’s group, completes the oral defense of her master’s thesis.

Mackenzie Shipley presents a talk for Virology@PSU.

- Colleen Mangold joins the lab as a postdoctoral researcher, brining her expertise in neurobiology, aging, and pharmacology. Welcome Colleen!

- Moriah & Chris Bowen present a poster at the 39th Annual International Herpesvirus Workshop (IHW) in Japan.

– Jacob Shreve becomes our first lab alum, as he leaves to attend medical school at Indiana University School of Medicine.

- Moriah presents the lab’s current research at the University of Pennsylvania symposium, “Herpesviruses: Pathogenesis & Cancer

Chris Sharkey wins an Undergraduate Summer Discovery Grant for his summer research project in the lab.

- Moriah and other health researchers at Penn State build bridges with Penn State’s new visualization wall.

– PSU News carries Huck Institutes Seth Palmer’s article about our recent publication in the Journal of Virology.

- Chuck Grose comments in Journal of Virology about our recent paper. He begins, “An unintended consequence of phylogenetics is that it provides answers to questions that investigators were unaware they needed to ask.…”


- Utsav Pandey & Mackenzie Shipley join the lab as BMMB Graduate Students.  Welcome Mackenzie & Utsav!

Latest publication: “Evolution and Diversity in Human Herpes Simplex Virus Genomes” goes online at Journal of Virology.

Jacob Shreve joins the lab as Computational Scientist and bioinformatics specialist.  Welcome Jacob!

Huck Institutes writer Seth Palmer profiles Szpara Lab research.

Chris Bowen joins the lab as Research Technologist and lab manager.  Welcome Chris!

- Beginning of the Szpara Lab at PSU

New neuron-like cells (January 2018)


Father-son transmission of HSV-1 (October 2017)father-son-transmission-web

Priscilla Schaffer Award (July 2017)

Viruses can reveal your travel history (April 2016)Forensic_virology_news

Have Herpes, Will Travel (April 2014)

The Scientist_300x190

Quantifying herpesvirus variation (February 2014)


New visualization wall in CyberHealth (February 2014)


BMB Welcomes Dr. Moriah Szpara (March 2013)

Welcome article_300x190

JoVE: Differentiation of the SH-SY5Y Human Neuroblastoma Cell Line

Szpara Lab Introduction video

Lab Promo Splash

Epidemics MOOC video


JoVE: Preparation of Viral DNA from Nucleocapsids

Jove screenshot

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