PLOS Pathogens Editors-in-Chief

Biography for Kasturi Haldar

Kasturi Haldar, the Julius Nieuwland Professor of Biology and Parsons-Quinn Director for the Center for Rare and Neglected Diseases at the University of Notre Dame is an authority on the mechanisms by which human malaria parasites remodel their host cells. Her laboratory pioneered the application of modern cell biological tools to studying malarial infection of the erythrocyte. They identified a novel transport signal that enables parasite protein to access the host erythrocyte and thus defined secretome of several hundred parasite effectors involved in virulence and structural remodeling of the host. Other major achievements include the identification of the pathway of parasite protein export to the erythrocyte and demonstration that the host targeting signal of malaria parasites is shared by the Irish potato famine pathogen Phytophthora infestans.

The Haldar lab also identified novel malarial Golgi dynamics that underlie a lipid rich, nutrient import pathway in infected erythrocytes and enable transport of cholesterol-rich host 'raft' complexes, essential nutrient solutes and lipids to the malarial vacuole. They have further established that the sterol biosynthetic pathway and cholesterol are important to intracellular infection by Salmonella.

In addition, Haldar and her colleagues have shown that adrenergic signaling is an active process in erythrocyte and required for malaria invasion and growth. They have established erythrocyte signaling pathways can be targets for malarial infection and may be important for treatment of malaria.


  • B.Sc., Bryn Mawr College
  • Ph.D., Biochemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Rockefeller University

Awards and Honors

  • Elected Fellow, American Academy of Microbiology
  • Elected Fellow, American Academy for the Advancement of Science
  • Burroughs Wellcome Fund, New Investigator Award and New Initiatives in Malaria Award

Selected Publications

  • Haldar K, Hiller NL, van Ooij C, Bhattacharjee S. Plasmodium parasite proteins and the infected erythrocyte. Review. Trends Parasitol 21:402-3, 2005
  • Bhattacharjee S, Hiller NL, Liolios K, Win J, Kanneganti TD, Young C, Kamoun S, Haldar K. The malarial host-targeting signal is conserved in the Irish potato famine pathogen. PLOS Pathog. 2:e50, 2006
  • Murphy SC, Hiller NL, Harrison T, Lomasney JW, Mohandas N, Haldar K. Lipid rafts and malaria parasite infection of erythrocytes. Mol Membr Biol. 23:81-8, 2006
  • Chaudhari A, Fialho AM, Ratner D, Gupta P, Hong CS, Kahali S, Yamada T, Haldar K, Murphy S, Cho W, Chauhan VS, Das Gupta TK, Chakrabarty AM. Azurin, Plasmodium falciparum malaria and HIV/AIDS: inhibition of parasitic and viral growth by Azurin. Cell Cycle. 5:1642-8, 2006
  • Haldar K, Kamoun S, Hiller NL, Bhattacharje S, van Ooij C. Common infection strategies of pathogenic eukaryotes. Nat Rev Microbiol. 4:922-931, 2006

Biography for Grant McFadden

Grant McFadden is currently a Professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology at the University of Florida, College of Medicine. For the past 30 years, his lab has been investigating how viruses, particularly poxviruses, evade the immune system.

The McFadden lab currently studies poxvirus host range genes that are critical determinants of cellular tropism and also to investigate the inhibition of cellular inflammasomes and NFkB signaling by poxviruses. His lab has pioneered the field of viral immunomodulation, and is credited with the discovery of a wide variety of viral inhibitors of the immune system. These include virus-encoded modulators of extracellular pathways, cell surface molecules, and intracellular pathways. McFadden co-coined the term “anti-immunology” to describe this growing field of research. McFadden is a member of the WHO research oversight Committee on Variola Virus research and is often consulted internationally about issues related to bioterrorism and biosecurity. McFadden is a co-founder of Viron Therapeutics, Inc. to develop the use of viral proteins for therapeutic purposes against systemic inflammatory diseases.

Before becoming joint Editor-in-Chief for PLOS Pathogens in 2013, McFadden served as the Deputy Editor-in-Chief starting in 2007. He is also a senior Editor for Journal of Virology, and he serves on the Editorial Boards of a variety of other scholarly journals in the area of virology and immunology.


  • B.Sc., Biochemistry, McGill University
  • Ph.D., Biochemistry, McGill University
  • Sabbatical Research, Harvard Medical School

Awards and Honors

  • Elected Fellow, American Academy of Microbiology
  • Elected Fellow, Royal Society of Canada
  • Howard Hughes Medical Institute International Scholarship

Selected Publications

  • Finlay B and McFadden G. Anti-immunology: Evasion of the host immune system by bacterial and viral pathogens. Cell 124:767-782 (2006).
  • Rahman, MM, Mohamed, MR, Kim, M, Smallwood, S, McFadden, G. Co-regulation of NF-κB and inflammasome-mediated inflammatory responses by Myxoma virus pyrin domain-containing protein M013. PLoS Pathogens 5(10): e1000635 (2009).
  • McFadden, G. Killing a Killer: What next for Smallpox? PLoS Pathogens 6(1):e1000727 (2010).
  • Rahman, M and McFadden, G. Modulation of NF-κB signaling by microbial pathogens. Nat. Rev. Micro. 9: 291-306 (2011).
  • Chan, WM, Rahman, MM and McFadden G. Oncolytic Myxoma Virus: The path to clinic. Vaccine 33: 4252-4258 (2013).
  • Rahman, MM, Liu, J, Chan, W, Rothenberg, S and McFadden, G. Myxoma virus protein M029 is a dual function immunomodulator that inhibits PKR and also conscripts RHA/DHX9 to promote expanded host tropism and viral replication. PLoS Pathogens 9:7 e1003465 (2013).