Cammie Lesser Associate ProfessorHarvard Medical SchoolMost side effects associated with drugs are the result of off-target effects due to drugs being delivered throughout the body as opposed to the specific site of disease. The Lesser lab proposes to develop designer beneficial bacteria that specifically deliver treatments to sites of disease. To accomplish this, researchers use cutting-edge genetic technology to re-engineer safe and beneficial bacteria and program them to directly secrete protein-based medicines to sites of disease. These bacteria will also be able to recognize and secrete a new class of therapeutic proteins that can bind to and neutralize disease-causing proteins with exquisite specificity. Through this work the Lesser lab hopes to develop a novel and cost-effective beneficial-bacteria technology to deliver drugs in a safe and effective way to treat and cure a variety of human diseases including infections, autoimmune-based diseases and cancers.