Arturo Casadevall is a physician-scientist with research interests in microbiology and immunology. The major focus on his work has been investigations into fungal pathogenesis and mechanisms of antibody function. He has also focused on ways to improve science with emphasis on education and improving the publication process. He was born in Cuba and arrived in the United States at age 11. He attended Queens College of the City University of New York where he majored in chemistry. Subsequently, he received his M.D. and Ph.D. from New York University. He completed his internship/residency in internal medicine at Bellevue Hospital and specialized in Infectious Diseases at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he also completed postdoctoral training with Dr. Matthew Scharff. He has served on the National Science Board for Biosecurity and the National Commission on Forensic Science. He was chair of the Board of Governors of the American Academy of Microbiology, the honorific arm of the American Society for Microbiology. He was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation, American Academy of Physicians, American Academy of Microbiology, Fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science, American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine.

Research Interests

The Casadevall laboratory studies how fungi cause disease and antibodies protect, with the major research interest being in the human pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans and its interactions with host phagocytic cells. C. neoformans has a remarkable intracellular pathogenic strategy where it survives in a mature phagosome and can subvert cellular functions to promote its exit through a mechanism known as non-lytic exocytosis. This organism is also noteworthy in being the only eukaryotic pathogenic microbe with a large polysaccharide capsule. C. neoformans produces melanin, which is important for virulence. Both the structure of the polysaccharide capsule and the process of melanization are major areas of study. Dr. Casadevall's interests on antibody function were initially focused on how humoral immunity protected against intracellular pathogens, such as C. neoformans. Antibodies to the capsule were shown to have non-classical functions such as mediating direct effects on fungal metabolism and catalytic degradation of the capsule. During the COVID-19 pandemic Dr. Casadevall used his knowledge of antibody function to study the efficacy of convalescent plasma and was involved in studies that showed it was effective when used early in the course of disease and with units containing high concentration of virus neutralizing antibodies.

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Primary Section

Section 44: Microbial Biology

Secondary Section

Section 43: Immunology and Inflammation