Overview

The focus of our research program over the past several years has been the molecular genetic analysis of host-microbe interactions using Caenorhabditis elegans as a simple host organism in which to acquire a systems-level, molecular, cellular, and organismal view of how a simple animal host responds to pathogenic and commensal bacteria. Our studies have spanned evolutionarily conserved pathways of innate immunity, the integrative physiology that connects infection and immunity with cellular and organismal responses to stress, and how interactions with microbes influence neuronal signaling and behavior of C. elegans. We continue to bring a broad interdisciplinary perspective, experimentally grounded in the molecular genetics of C. elegans, to our current areas of research focus, including understanding how microbes and their secondary metabolites can modulate host neuroendocrine physiology and behavior.

Background

Dennis Kim received his MD and PhD degrees from Harvard Medical School, completed internship and residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and clinical fellowship training in Infectious Diseases at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital. He completed postdoctoral research training in genetics at Massachusetts General Hospital. Prior to assuming his current position at Boston Children’s Hospital, for thirteen years he was a Professor in the Department of Biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology while maintaining clinical attending responsibilities in Infectious Diseases at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

Researcher Services

Researcher Areas

  • Genetics of innate immunity
  • Host-microbe interactions

Research Divisions

PUBLICATIONS

Publications powered by Harvard Catalyst Profiles

  1. Fletcher M, Tillman EJ, Butty VL, Levine SS, Kim DH. Global transcriptional regulation of innate immunity by ATF-7 in C. elegans. PLoS Genet. 2019 02; 15(2):e1007830. View abstract
  2. Tillman EJ, Richardson CE, Cattie DJ, Reddy KC, Lehrbach NJ, Droste R, Ruvkun G, Kim DH. Endoplasmic Reticulum Homeostasis Is Modulated by the Forkhead Transcription Factor FKH-9 During Infection of Caenorhabditis elegans. Genetics. 2018 12; 210(4):1329-1337. View abstract
  3. Kim DH. Bacterial Siderophores Promote Animal Host Iron Acquisition and Growth. Cell. 2018 10 04; 175(2):311-312. View abstract
  4. Kim DH, Ewbank JJ. Signaling in the innate immune response. WormBook. 2018 08 14; 2018:1-35. View abstract
  5. Hilbert ZA, Kim DH. PDF-1 neuropeptide signaling regulates sexually dimorphic gene expression in shared sensory neurons of C. elegans. Elife. 2018 07 19; 7. View abstract
  6. Kulalert W, Sadeeshkumar H, Zhang YK, Schroeder FC, Kim DH. Molecular Determinants of the Regulation of Development and Metabolism by Neuronal eIF2a Phosphorylation in Caenorhabditis elegans. Genetics. 2017 05; 206(1):251-263. View abstract
  7. Hilbert ZA, Kim DH. Sexually dimorphic control of gene expression in sensory neurons regulates decision-making behavior in C. elegans. Elife. 2017 01 24; 6. View abstract
  8. Fletcher M, Kim DH. Age-Dependent Neuroendocrine Signaling from Sensory Neurons Modulates the Effect of Dietary Restriction on Longevity of Caenorhabditis elegans. PLoS Genet. 2017 01; 13(1):e1006544. View abstract
  9. Cattie DJ, Richardson CE, Reddy KC, Ness-Cohn EM, Droste R, Thompson MK, Gilbert WV, Kim DH. Mutations in Nonessential eIF3k and eIF3l Genes Confer Lifespan Extension and Enhanced Resistance to ER Stress in Caenorhabditis elegans. PLoS Genet. 2016 09; 12(9):e1006326. View abstract
  10. Kim DH. IRE1 Sulfenylation by Reactive Oxygen Species Coordinates Cellular Stress Signaling. Mol Cell. 2016 08 18; 63(4):541-542. View abstract
  11. Meisel JD, Kim DH. Inhibition of Lithium-Sensitive Phosphatase BPNT-1 Causes Selective Neuronal Dysfunction in C. elegans. Curr Biol. 2016 07 25; 26(14):1922-8. View abstract
  12. Kim DH. Signal Transduction: A Different Kind of Toll Is in the BAG. Curr Biol. 2015 Aug 31; 25(17):R767-9. View abstract
  13. Pagano DJ, Kingston ER, Kim DH. Tissue expression pattern of PMK-2 p38 MAPK is established by the miR-58 family in C. elegans. PLoS Genet. 2015 Feb; 11(2):e1004997. View abstract
  14. Meisel JD, Panda O, Mahanti P, Schroeder FC, Kim DH. Chemosensation of bacterial secondary metabolites modulates neuroendocrine signaling and behavior of C. elegans. Cell. 2014 Oct 09; 159(2):267-80. View abstract
  15. Meisel JD, Kim DH. Behavioral avoidance of pathogenic bacteria by Caenorhabditis elegans. Trends Immunol. 2014 Oct; 35(10):465-70. View abstract
  16. Kulalert W, Kim DH. The unfolded protein response in a pair of sensory neurons promotes entry of C. elegans into dauer diapause. Curr Biol. 2013 Dec 16; 23(24):2540-5. View abstract
  17. Kim DH. Bacteria and the aging and longevity of Caenorhabditis elegans. Annu Rev Genet. 2013; 47:233-46. View abstract
  18. Richardson CE, Kinkel S, Kim DH. Physiological IRE-1-XBP-1 and PEK-1 signaling in Caenorhabditis elegans larval development and immunity. PLoS Genet. 2011 Nov; 7(11):e1002391. View abstract
  19. Chang HC, Paek J, Kim DH. Natural polymorphisms in C. elegans HECW-1 E3 ligase affect pathogen avoidance behaviour. Nature. 2011 Nov 16; 480(7378):525-9. View abstract
  20. Reddy KC, Hunter RC, Bhatla N, Newman DK, Kim DH. Caenorhabditis elegans NPR-1-mediated behaviors are suppressed in the presence of mucoid bacteria. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Aug 02; 108(31):12887-92. View abstract
  21. Youngman MJ, Rogers ZN, Kim DH. A decline in p38 MAPK signaling underlies immunosenescence in Caenorhabditis elegans. PLoS Genet. 2011 May; 7(5):e1002082. View abstract
  22. Shivers RP, Pagano DJ, Kooistra T, Richardson CE, Reddy KC, Whitney JK, Kamanzi O, Matsumoto K, Hisamoto N, Kim DH. Phosphorylation of the conserved transcription factor ATF-7 by PMK-1 p38 MAPK regulates innate immunity in Caenorhabditis elegans. PLoS Genet. 2010 Apr 01; 6(4):e1000892. View abstract
  23. Richardson CE, Kooistra T, Kim DH. An essential role for XBP-1 in host protection against immune activation in C. elegans. Nature. 2010 Feb 25; 463(7284):1092-5. View abstract
  24. Shivers RP, Kooistra T, Chu SW, Pagano DJ, Kim DH. Tissue-specific activities of an immune signaling module regulate physiological responses to pathogenic and nutritional bacteria in C. elegans. Cell Host Microbe. 2009 Oct 22; 6(4):321-30. View abstract
  25. Powell JR, Kim DH, Ausubel FM. The G protein-coupled receptor FSHR-1 is required for the Caenorhabditis elegans innate immune response. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Feb 24; 106(8):2782-7. View abstract
  26. Reddy KC, Andersen EC, Kruglyak L, Kim DH. A polymorphism in npr-1 is a behavioral determinant of pathogen susceptibility in C. elegans. Science. 2009 Jan 16; 323(5912):382-4. View abstract
  27. Kim D. Studying host-pathogen interactions and innate immunity in Caenorhabditis elegans. Dis Model Mech. 2008 Nov-Dec; 1(4-5):205-8. View abstract
  28. Shivers RP, Youngman MJ, Kim DH. Transcriptional responses to pathogens in Caenorhabditis elegans. Curr Opin Microbiol. 2008 Jun; 11(3):251-6. View abstract
  29. Troemel ER, Chu SW, Reinke V, Lee SS, Ausubel FM, Kim DH. p38 MAPK regulates expression of immune response genes and contributes to longevity in C. elegans. PLoS Genet. 2006 Nov 10; 2(11):e183. View abstract
  30. Kim DH, Ausubel FM. Evolutionary perspectives on innate immunity from the study of Caenorhabditis elegans. Curr Opin Immunol. 2005 Feb; 17(1):4-10. View abstract
  31. Kim DH, Liberati NT, Mizuno T, Inoue H, Hisamoto N, Matsumoto K, Ausubel FM. Integration of Caenorhabditis elegans MAPK pathways mediating immunity and stress resistance by MEK-1 MAPK kinase and VHP-1 MAPK phosphatase. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 Jul 27; 101(30):10990-4. View abstract
  32. Mizuno T, Hisamoto N, Terada T, Kondo T, Adachi M, Nishida E, Kim DH, Ausubel FM, Matsumoto K. The Caenorhabditis elegans MAPK phosphatase VHP-1 mediates a novel JNK-like signaling pathway in stress response. EMBO J. 2004 Jun 02; 23(11):2226-34. View abstract
  33. Liberati NT, Fitzgerald KA, Kim DH, Feinbaum R, Golenbock DT, Ausubel FM. Requirement for a conserved Toll/interleukin-1 resistance domain protein in the Caenorhabditis elegans immune response. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 Apr 27; 101(17):6593-8. View abstract
  34. Garsin DA, Villanueva JM, Begun J, Kim DH, Sifri CD, Calderwood SB, Ruvkun G, Ausubel FM. Long-lived C. elegans daf-2 mutants are resistant to bacterial pathogens. Science. 2003 Jun 20; 300(5627):1921. View abstract
  35. Kim DH, Feinbaum R, Alloing G, Emerson FE, Garsin DA, Inoue H, Tanaka-Hino M, Hisamoto N, Matsumoto K, Tan MW, Ausubel FM. A conserved p38 MAP kinase pathway in Caenorhabditis elegans innate immunity. Science. 2002 Jul 26; 297(5581):623-6. View abstract