Welcome to the Miyashiro Lab!

We seek to understand how bacteria adapt to a host environment. We study the mutualistic symbiosis established between the Hawaiian bobtail squid (Euprymna scolopes) and a bioluminescent bacterium (Vibrio fischeri). From within a dedicated structure called the light organ, populations of V. fischeri produce light that the squid uses to camouflage itself at night. We use microbial genetics, confocal microscopy, and biochemistry to explore bacterial gene regulation within this fascinating symbiosis.

Spring 2019


Congratulations to Andy and Roxy for graduating from Penn State and The Miyashiro Lab in Spring of 2019

Andy has accepted a Microbiology Ph.D. program at Cornell University beginning Fall 2019.

Lab bowling Spring 2019

The Lab’s talented undergraduates presenting at the 2019 Undergraduate Exhibition

Miyashiro Lab Spring 2019

Lab Ice cream celebrating the successful semester!




Fall 2018

Miyashiro Lab Fall 2018
(Missing Mandi & Rachel)

Congratulations to undergraduate Taylor Yount for receiving a grant from the Student Engagement Network at Penn State to work on an undergraduate research projects in our lab!

Summer 2018

Congratulations to undergraduate Caroline Steingard as she begins her Ph.D. in microbiology. Article!

Spring 2018

Miyashiro Lab
Berkey Creamery

Congratulations to the following students for their impressive achievements during the Spring 2018 semester:

Caroline Steingard (Senior)
-Stipend and fellowship from Cornell University for the Microbiology Ph.D. program where she’s been accepted in the fall 2018 semester.
-Best Undergraduate Poster Overall (1st place)” and $200 from ECMSS (Environmental Chemistry and Microbiology Student Symposium).

 Andy Murtha (Junior)
-RESTEK Student Research symposium – 1st place
-NASA PA Space Grant Consortium Undergraduate Scholarship
-Undergraduate Research Fellowship from American Society for Microbiology

Mandi Williams
-Second place in the Health & Life Sciences category at the Undergraduate Research Exhibition!   Article

Diego Santos and Rachel Bruning (Freshmen)
– “Information Literacy Award at the 2018 Undergraduate Research Exhibition.” All entries at the Exhibition were eligible for this award!  A display is available at the Franklin Atrium in the library.  Article

Congratulations to Austin Wittmer, who will be accepting a summer internship with Kimberly-Clark, working on tissue cultures.  This is a good fit for Austin’s eventual plans for PA school to focus in dermatology.


Welcoming 4 new talented undergraduates to the Miyashiro Lab!


Fall 2017

Lab bowling at Northland Bowl!

Miyashiro Lab Fall 2017
(During the solar eclipse)

Summer 2017

Lab Reunion 2017
Presentations, dinner, ice cream, & bowling!

Lab Ice Skating at Pegula Ice Arena!

ASM Microbe 2017
Talk by Dr. Tim Miyashiro
Posters by Ericka D. Reed & Caroline Steingard

Spring 2017

Congratulations to Caroline and Andy for winning poster awards at the Environmental Chemistry and Microbiology Student Symposium!

1st Place
Andrew Murtha (Biochemistry & Molecular Biology)
“Communication Between Vibrio fischeri Populations within the Squid Light Organ”

3rd Place
Caroline Steingard (Biochemistry & Molecular Biology)
“Investigation of codependent strain characteristics in polyclonal V. fischeri infections”


Congratulations to the following lab members for the awards won at the Tri-Beta National Biological Honor Society Regional Conference at Frostburg State University in Maryland!

Caroline Steingard (Biology) – Frist Place Poster Sessions I
Brain Bui (BMB) – First Place Poster Session II
Andrew Murtha (BMB) – Third Place Poster Session III


Miyashiro Lab
Spring 2017

The Miyashiro Lab celebrates graduate student
Nathan Wasilko passing his candidacy!

Lab Reunion
Summer 2016