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The Department of Microbiology and Immunology is pleased to announce that Brandon Anjuwon-Foster is the 2018 recipient of the $1,000 G. Philip Manire Graduate Student Excellence in Research Award. For his dissertation work in Rita Tamayo’s lab, Brandon explored how expression of motility and virulence functions in the bacterial pathogen Clostridium difficile are switched on and off by inversion of a segment of chromosomal DNA. Brandon found that the regulation does not occur by the usual mechanism of a promoter to initiate transcription located in the invertible segment, but instead likely involves termination of transcription dependent on the Rho protein. In addition to the novelty of the apparent mechanism, Brandon’s research represents an entirely new direction for the Tamayo lab, which Brandon developed and conducted mostly by himself. Brandon’s project is now the foundation of a grant application to fund future research in the Tamayo lab. For these reasons, Brandon meets the Manire Award criteria of conducting the most significant and impressive graduate student research project.