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Joshua Harris

Joshua Harris

[email protected]

Department: Microbiology & Immunology
Advisor: Joel Wilmore, PhD

Student Profile:

My path to the MD/PhD program here at Upstate started during my undergraduate education at SUNY-ESF when I was working as undergraduate researcher in a biochemistry lab that focused on engineering bacteria to make biodegradable plastics. I was absolutely fascinated by the immense capacity and potential of bacteria to shape our world. I continued my research in this same lab as a master's student and started spending much of my spare time reading about new discoveries in the realm of microbiome studies and the symbiotic relationships between humans and bacteria.

Although I was never traditionally a pre-med student, my passion for human microbiome motivated me to direct my career towards research that would benefit human health. I started in the MD/PhD program at SUNY Upstate in 2018 and was very fortunate to find a lab that supports my passion and scientific interests. Working with Dr. Joel Wilmore, I have developed a number of projects that primarily focus on the colonization dynamics of the human symbiont Bacteroides fragilis and the effect of gut microbes on the development of systemic IgA antibodies.

When I am not busy in the lab, I spend a lot of time taking care of plants. I like to garden, grow aquatic plants, and have over 50 house plants. I also like to travel, go to concerts, rock climb, play board games, and do anything that makes me laugh and have a good time. I really enjoy living in Syracuse and I am extremely grateful for the supportive and positive environment here at SUNY Upstate. The MD/PhD program is like a big family, and I am proud to be a part of it.


  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27542998/
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26311173/
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24794562/