Welcome to the Smith Laboratory!

Host-Pathogen Kinetics of Viral and Bacterial Infections and Coinfections

● Model-Driven Experimentation ● Data-Driven Modeling ●
● Infection Dynamics ● Integrative Analysis ●
● Mathematical Virology, Bacteriology, and Immunology ●

We study host-pathogen interactions using an integrated approach that combines data-driven mathematical models and model-driven experiments. We specialize in developing and calibrating mathematical models of viral, bacterial, and host immune kinetics using high-quality, quantitative data. We then design and carry out experiments to test our analytical predictions. We use this method to understand the complex pathogen and immune dynamics during viral infections, bacterial infections, and multi-pathogen coinfections.

Positions Available


Dr. Amber Smith, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatrics and the Institute for the Study of Host-Pathogen Systems at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. She is a quantitative biologist trained in both Applied Mathematics and Experimental Microbiology and Immunology.

Recent Publications

Cresta, D, Warren, DC, Quirouette, C, Smith, AP, Lane, LC, Smith, AM, Beauchemin, CAA* (2021). Time to revisit the endpoint dilution assay and to replace the TCID50 as a measure of a virus sample’s infection concentration. PLoS Comput Biol 17(10): e1009480. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1009480

Pinky, L, Burke, CW, Russell, CJ, Smith, AM* (2021). Quantifying Dose-, Strain-, and Tissue-Specific Kinetics of Parainfluenza Virus Infection. PLoS Comput Biol 17(8): e1009299. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1009299

Jenner, AL, Aogo, RA, Alfonso, S, Crowe, V, Smith, AP, Morel, PA, Davis, CL, Smith, AM*, Craig, M* (2021). COVID-19 virtual patient cohort reveals immune mechanisms driving disease outcomes. PLoS Pathog 17(7):e1009753. DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1009753

Myers, MA, Smith, AP, Lane, LC, Moquin, DJ, Woolard, S, Thomas, PG, Vogel, P, and Smith, AM* (2021). Dynamically Linking Influenza Virus Infection Kinetics, Lung Injury, Inflammation, and Disease Severity. eLife 10:e68864 doi: 10.7554/eLife.68864; Highlighted in this SIAM News Article

Smith, AP, Lane, LC, Moquin, DJ, van Opijnen, T, Woolard, S, Carter, R, Iverson, A, Burnham, C, Vogel, P, Roeber, D, Hochu, G, Johnson, MDL, McCullers, JA, Rosch, JR, Smith, AM* (2021). Dynamic Pneumococcal Genetic Adaptations Support Bacterial Growth and Inflammation During Coinfection with Influenza. Infect Immun 89:e00023-21. doi: 10.1128/IAI.00023-21

Kumar, A, Kodidela, S, Tadrous, E, Cory, TJ, Walker, CMM, Smith, AM, Mukherjee, A and Kumar, S* (2020). Extracellular Vesicles in Viral Replication and Pathogenesis and Their Potential Role in Therapeutic Intervention. Viruses 12(8), 887. doi: 10.3390/v12080887

Penkert, RR, Smith, AP, Hrinicius, ER, McCullers, JA, Vogel, P, Smith, AM, and Hurwitz, JL* (2020). Effect of Vitamin A Deficiency in Dysregulating Immune Responses to Influenza Virus and Increasing Mortality Rates After Bacterial Coinfections. J Infect Dis, jiaa597, doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiaa597

Gaur, AH, McCarthy, JS, Panetta JC, Dallas, R., Woodford, J, Tang, Li, Smith, AM, Stewart, TB, Branum, KC, Freeman III, BB, Patel, ND, John, E, Chalon, S, Ost, S, Heine, RN, Richardson, JL, Christensen, R, Flynn, PM, Van Gessel, Y, Mitasev, B, Möhrle, JJ, Gusovsky, F, Bebrevska, L, Guy, RK* (2020). Safety, Tolerability, Pharmacokinetics, and Antimalarial Efficacy of a Novel Plasmodium falciparum ATP4 Inhibitor (SJ733): A First-in-Human and Induced Blood Stage Malaria Phase 1a/ 1b Study. Lancet Infect Dis 20(8), 964-975 doi: 10.1016/S1473-3099(19)30611-5

2014 Editorial