Pat Fidopiastis

Pat Fidopiastis, Ph.D.


33-374 office
33-460 lab



B.S. CSU, Fullerton Senior Project: An analysis of the ability of flies to transmit pathogenic microbes
M.S. CSU, Fullerton Thesis: Microbial diversity in the digestive tract of an herbivorous marine fish
Ph.D. University of Hawai'i, Manoa Dissertation: Benign infections of sepiolid squids by luminous Vibrio species: model systems for understanding environmental and genetic factors that regulate bacteria-host interactions

Courses Taught

General Microbiology, Wine Microbiology, Food Microbiology, Dairy Microbiology, Molecular Biology, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Bacterial Genetics, Microbial Physiology, Bacterial Symbiosis, Virology, Microbiology for Nurses

Research Interests

  • Quantifying SARS CoV2 (COVID-19 virus) in municipal waste water in order to track virus transmission in the community.
  • Genomic Analysis of SARS CoV2 in municipal waste water to study evolution of variants in the community.
  • Cold-water fish pathogen V. salmonicida establishes a pathogenic relationship with salmon and trout.
  • Luminous bacterium V. fischeri both establishes and maintains a symbiotic association with the Hawaiian sepiolid squid Euprymna scolopes.
  • Phylogeny, physiology, and distribution of resident gut microbes within herbivorous marine fishes indigenous to the California coast.
  • Symbiotic and pathogenic associations of marine Vibrio spp. with their animal hosts.
  • Molecular genetics and physiology of pathogens such as Staphylococcus aureusEscherichia coli, and Klebsiella pneumoniae
  • Preparation and antimicrobial screening of novel bacterial homoserine lactone autoinducer analogs
  • Detection of pathogens in the environment (e.g. water, soil, compost)
  • Prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in the Cal Poly community
  • Correlation between oral microbiota and obesity in mother-infant pairs
  • Effectiveness of mortality composting in killing thermotolerant strains of Salmonella
  • Tracking changes in microbial populations during the composting process
  • Metagenomic analysis of human gut microbial diversity
  • Microbial ecology and biochemistry of wine spoilage
  • Developing technology for tracking animal host behavior in the environment
  • Antibacterial effectiveness of silver-ion based disinfectants against pathogens such as Listeria monocytogenesPseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staph. aureus (industry collaboration)

Further Research Details

The Fidopiastis lab uses a variety of classical and molecular approaches to understand ecology, physiology, and gene expression of environmental and host-associated microbes.

Advising Interests

  • Any projects related to microbial ecology, physiology, and pathogenesis


Selected publications:

Fidopiastis PM, Childs C, Esin JJ, Stellern J, Darin A, Lorenzo, A, Mariscal VT, Lorenz J, Gopan V, McAnulty S, and Visick KL. 2022. Vibrio fischeri possesses Xds and Dns nucleases that differentially influence phosphate scavenging, aggregation, competence, and symbiotic colonization. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 10.1128/aem.01635-22

Cohen JJ, Eichinger SJ, Witte DA, Cook CJ, Fidopiastis PM, Tepavčević J, and Visick KL. 2021. Control of competence in Vibrio fischeri. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.01962-20

Fidopiastis PM, Mariscal VT*, McPherson J-M*, McAnulty S, Dunn A, Stabb EV, and Visick KL. 2021. Vibrio fischeri amidase activity is required for normal cell division, motility, and symbiotic competence. Applied and Environmental Microbiology10.1128/AEM.02109-20

Stoudenmire JL, Black M, Fidopiastis PM, Stabb EV. 2019. Mutagenesis of Vibrio fischeri and Other Marine Bacteria Using Hyperactive Mini-Tn5 Derivatives. In: Ricke S., Park S., Davis M. (eds) Microbial Transposon Mutagenesis. Methods in Molecular Biology, vol 2016. Humana, New York, NY 10.1007/978-1-4939-9570-7_9

Sengstack JS, Aquino A, Schilling K, Davies J, Lehrer J, Ng C, Armstrong M, Souza L, Villaroman J, Santos R, Mason M, Brummit M, Gruver M, Abadi S, Meisenheimer K, and Fidopiastis PM. 2016. The preparation and screening of several novel bacterial homoserine lactone autoinducers. FASEB Journal. Vol.30 no. 1

Yim S, Clark CM, Peters T, Prodanov V, and Fidopiastis PM. ROV-based Tracking of a Shallow Water Nocturnal Squid. Proc. of the OCEANS 2013 Conference (OCEANS 2013)

Fidopiastis PM, Rader BA, Gerling D, Gutierrez N, Watkins K, Frey M, Nyholm SV, Whistler CA. 2012. Characterization of a Vibrio fischeri aminopeptidase and evidence for its influence on an early state of squid colonization. J. Bacteriol. Aug/194(15): 3995-4002. 10.1128/jb.00108-12

Nelson EJ, Tunsjø HS, Fidopiastis PM, Sørum H, Ruby EG. 2007. A novel lux operon in the cryptically bioluminescent fish pathogen Vibrio salmonicida is associated with virulence. Appl. Environ. Micro. 73: 1825-1833. 10.1128/aem.02255-06

Fidopiastis PM, Bezdek DJ, Kandel JS, Horn MH. 2006. Characterizing the resident, fermentative microbial consortium in the hindgut of the temperate-zone herbivorous fish, Hermosilla azurea (Teleostei: Kyphosidae). Mar. Biol. 148: 631-642. 10.1007/s00227-005-0106-2

Fidopiastis PM, Miyamato CM, Jobling MG, Meighen EA, Ruby EG. 2002. LitR, a new transcriptional activator in Vibrio fischeri, regulates luminescence and symbiotic light organ colonization. Mol. Microbiol. 45: 131-143. 10.1046/j.1365-2958.2002.02996.x

Fidopiastis PM. 2001. Benign infection of sepiolid squids by luminous Vibrio species: model systems for understanding environmental and genetic factors that regulate bacteria-host interaction. Ph.D. Dissertation, Univ. of Hawai'i, Manoa.

Fidopiastis PM, Sørum H, Ruby EG. 1999. Cryptic luminescence in the cold-water fish pathogen Vibrio salmonicida. Arch. Microbiol. 171: 205-209. 10.1007/s002030050700

Fidopiastis PM, von Boletzky S, Ruby EG. 1998. A new niche for Vibrio logei, the predominant light organ symbiont of the Mediterranean sepiolid squids Sepiola affinis and S. robusta. J. Bacteriol. 180: 59-64. 10.1128/jb.180.1.59-64.1998

Fidopiastis PM, von Boletzky S. 1998. Identification and physiological characterization of light organ symbionts of Mediterranean sepiolid squids. Pacific Science vol. 52.




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