Erin Carlson, PhD

Smith Professor of Chemistry, Department of Chemistry
Erin Carlson


Office Phone
Office Address

341 Smith Hall
207 Pleasant St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States


Smith Professor of Chemistry, Department of Chemistry
Graduate Faculty, Department of Medicinal Chemistry
Faculty, PhD Program in Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics


PhD, University of Wisconsin, 2005

BS, St. Olaf College, 2000

Post Doctorate, The Scripps Research Institute, 2006-2008

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Carlson Lab Group

To meet the challenges of antibiotic resistance and specter of a post-antibiotic era, the Carlson lab is pursuing the discovery of the master regulators of bacterial growth and communication and ultimately, the identification of new antibiotics through the application of diverse tools at the interface of chemistry and biology. 

We are currently pursuing three intersecting objectives:

  1. Development and application of powerful strategies to explore and interpret the molecular language used by bacteria to respond to environmental cues using a combination of mass spectrometry, informatics and novel separation reagents
  2. Pursuit of the generation of chemical probes and inhibitors for the global profiling and inhibition of histidine kinases, a ubiquitous class of proteins essential for signal transduction in bacteria
  3. To deepen our understanding of the multi-protein systems that dictate bacterial growth and division, we are designing selective probes for imaging and proteomics with specific focus on the penicillin-binding proteins. 

Each of our research objectives is independently important for potential therapeutic development. However, it is our focus on the synergy between multiple areas that is the foundation for our unique ability to detect, interrupt and exploit the master regulators of bacterial behavior