• Dr. Orihuela obtained his Bachelor of Science degree from Baylor University in 1996. He subsequently earned his PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston where he was the recipient of a National Science Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship and a Kempner Scholar. From 2001 to 2005, Dr. Orihuela completed his postdoctoral research training in the Department of Infectious Diseases at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis TN. He returned to Texas in 2005, as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. While at San Antonio, Dr. Orihuela was promoted with tenure to Associate Professor and recipient of the Presidential Junior Research Scholar Award, Distinguished Hispanic Faculty Award from the Graduate School, and Glenn Award for Research in Biological Mechanisms of Aging. In Fall of 2015 Dr. Orihuela joined the Department of Microbiology at UAB where he is now a full Professor, Vice-Chair of Faculty Development, and Interim-Chair of the Department. Dr. Orihuela is an elected member of the American Academy of Microbiology and has served as a Distinguished Speaker for the American Society of Microbiology. He has served as member of the Host Interactions with Bacterial Pathogens Study Section for the NIH, is currently an Associate Editor for the journals PLoS Pathogens, mBIO, and Infection and Immunity, and was the senior editor of a book on the molecular mechanisms of Streptococcus pneumoniae pathogenesis.
  • Selected Publications

    Academic Article

    Year Title Altmetric
    2023 Acute organ injury and long-term sequelae of severe pneumococcal infections.Pneumonia.  15:5. 2023
    2023 Targeting NAD+ regeneration enhances antibiotic susceptibility of Streptococcus pneumoniae during invasive disease.PLoS Biology.  21:e3002020. 2023
    2022 Pseudomonas aeruginosa Secretes the Oxylipin Autoinducer Synthases OdsA and OdsB via the Xcp Type 2 Secretion SystemJournal of Bacteriology.  204. 2022
    2022 A Jack of All Trades: The Role of Pneumococcal Surface Protein A in the Pathogenesis of Streptococcus pneumoniaeFrontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology.  12. 2022
    2022 Anatomical Site-Specific Carbohydrate Availability Impacts Streptococcus pneumoniae Virulence and Fitness during Colonization and DiseaseInfection and Immunity.  90. 2022
    2021 Capsule Promotes Intracellular Survival and Vascular Endothelial Cell Translocation during Invasive Pneumococcal DiseasemBio.  12. 2021
    2021 Splenic macrophages as the source of bacteraemia during pneumococcal pneumoniaEBioMedicine.  72. 2021
    2021 Pseudomonas aeruginosa synthesizes the autoinducers of its oxylipin-dependent quorum sensing system extracellularly 2021
    2021 Streptococcus pneumoniae binds to host GAPDH on dying lung epithelial cells worsening secondary infection following influenzaCell Reports.  35. 2021
    2021 Major Adverse Cardiovascular Events during Invasive Pneumococcal Disease Are Serotype DependentClinical Infectious Diseases.  72:E711-E719. 2021
    2021 Streptococcus pneumoniae binds to host lactate dehydrogenase via pspa and pspc to enhance virulencemBio.  12. 2021
    2021 Interaction between streptococcus pneumoniae and staphylococcus aureus generates OH radicals that rapidly kill staphylococcus aureus strainsJournal of Bacteriology.  201. 2021
    2021 Multi-valent protein hybrid pneumococcal vaccines: A strategy for the next generation of vaccinesVaccines.  9:1-17. 2021
    2020 An in vivo atlas of host–pathogen transcriptomes during Streptococcus pneumoniae colonization and disease 2020
    2020 Sugar-Coated Killer: Serotype 3 Pneumococcal DiseaseFrontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology.  10. 2020
    2020 Inhibition of Necroptosis to Prevent Long-term Cardiac Damage during Pneumococcal Pneumonia and Invasive DiseaseJournal of Infectious Diseases.  222:1882-1893. 2020
    2020 Influenza-Induced Oxidative Stress Sensitizes Lung Cells to Bacterial-Toxin-Mediated NecroptosisCell Reports.  32. 2020
    2020 Pneumococci can become virulent by acquiring a new capsule from oral streptococciJournal of Infectious Diseases.  222:372-380. 2020
    2020 Anatomical site-specific immunomodulation by bacterial biofilmsCurrent Opinion in Infectious Diseases.  33:238-243. 2020
    2020 Omega-3 fatty acids in contrast to omega-6 protect against pneumococcal pneumoniaMicrobial Pathogenesis.  141. 2020
    2020 Can animal models really teach us anything about pneumonia? ProEuropean Respiratory Journal.  55. 2020
    2019 Opening the OPK assay gatekeeper: Harnessing multi-modal protection by pneumococcal vaccinesPathogens.  8. 2019
    2019 In Vitro Adhesion, Invasion, and Transcytosis of Streptococcus pneumoniae with Host CellsMethods in Molecular Biology.  1968:137-146. 2019
    2019 Necroptotic cell death promotes adaptive immunity against colonizing pneumococciFrontiers in Immunology.  10. 2019
    2018 Bacterial Pore-Forming Toxins Promote the Activation of Caspases in Parallel to Necroptosis to Enhance Alarmin Release and Inflammation during PneumoniaScientific Reports.  8. 2018
    2018 Severity and properties of cardiac damage caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae are strain dependentPLoS One.  13. 2018
    2018 Future research directions in pneumoniaAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.  198:256-263. 2018
    2018 NAD+ Depletion Triggers Macrophage Necroptosis, a Cell Death Pathway Exploited by Mycobacterium tuberculosisCell Reports.  24:429-440. 2018
    2018 Bacterial-host interactions: Physiology and pathophysiology of respiratory infectionPhysiological Reviews.  98:781-811. 2018
    2018 Cell invasion and pyruvate oxidase-derived H 2 O 2 are critical for Streptococcus pneumoniae-mediated cardiomyocyte killingInfection and Immunity.  86. 2018
    2017 Severe pneumococcal pneumonia causes acute cardiac toxicity and subsequent cardiac remodelingAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.  196:609-620. 2017
    2017 Streptococcus pneumoniae in the heart subvert the host response through biofilm-mediated resident macrophage killingPLoS Pathogens.  13. 2017
    2017 The pneumococcal serotype 15C capsule is partially O-acetylated and allows for limited evasion of 23-valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine-elicited anti-serotype 15B antibodiesClinical and Vaccine Immunology.  24. 2017
    2017 High endocan levels are associated with the need for mechanical ventilation among patients with severe sepsisEuropean Respiratory Journal.  50. 2017
    2017 Position of O-acetylation within the capsular repeat unit impacts the biological properties of pneumococcal serotypes 33A and 33FInfection and Immunity.  85. 2017
    2017 Transcriptional organization of pneumococcal psrP-secY2A2 and impact of GtfA and GtfB deletion on PsrP-associated virulence properties 2017
    2017 Pore-forming toxin-mediated ion dysregulation leads to death receptor-independent necroptosis of lung epithelial cells during bacterial pneumoniaCell Death and Differentiation.  24:917-928. 2017
    2017 Killing of Serratia marcescens biofilms with chloramphenicolAnnals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials.  16. 2017
    2017 YopE specific CD8+ T cells provide protection against systemic and mucosal Yersinia pseudotuberculosis infectionPLoS One.  12. 2017
    2016 Endothelial adhesion molecules and multiple organ failure in patients with severe sepsisCytokine.  88:267-273. 2016
    2016 A non-human primate model of severe pneumococcal pneumoniaPLoS One.  11. 2016
    2016 CD8+ T cells specific to a single Yersinia pseudotuberculosis epitope restrict bacterial replication in the liver but fail to provide sterilizing immunityInfection, Genetics and Evolution.  43:289-296. 2016
    2016 Infiltrated macrophages die of pneumolysin-mediated necroptosis following pneumococcal myocardial invasionInfection and Immunity.  84:1457-1469. 2016
    2016 Senescent Cells Contribute to the Physiological Remodeling of Aged Lungs 2016
    2016 Anatomical site-specific contributions of pneumococcal virulence determinants.Pneumonia.  8. 2016
    2016 Neuraminidase A-exposed galactose promotes Streptococcus pneumoniae biofilm formation during colonizationInfection and Immunity.  84:2922-2932. 2016
    2015 Chronic mTOR inhibition in mice with rapamycin alters T, B, myeloid, and innate lymphoid cells and gut flora and prolongs life of immune-deficient miceAging Cell.  14:945-956. 2015
    2015 Visualization of streptococcus pneumoniae within cardiac microlesions and subsequent cardiac remodelingJournal of Visualized Experiments.  2015. 2015
    2015 Chromogranin A levels and mortality in patients with severe sepsisBiomarkers.  20:171-176. 2015
    2015 Cardiotoxicity during invasive pneumococcal diseaseAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.  191:739-745. 2015
    2015 Pore-Forming Toxins Induce Macrophage Necroptosis during Acute Bacterial PneumoniaPLoS Pathogens.  11. 2015
    2015 Requirement for Serratia marcescens cytolysin in a murine model of hemorrhagic pneumoniaInfection and Immunity.  83:614-624. 2015
    2014 Streptococcus pneumoniae Translocates into the Myocardium and Forms Unique Microlesions That Disrupt Cardiac FunctionPLoS Pathogens.  10. 2014
    2014 Elevated A20 contributes to age-dependent macrophage dysfunction in the lungsExperimental Gerontology.  54:58-66. 2014
    2014 Pneumococci in biofilms are non-invasive: Implications on nasopharyngeal colonizationFrontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology.  4. 2014
    2013 Streptococcus pneumoniae biofilm formation is strain dependent, multifactorial, and associated with reduced invasiveness and immunoreactivity during colonizationmBio.  4. 2013
    2013 Interactions between Blood-Borne Streptococcus pneumoniae and the Blood-Brain Barrier Preceding MeningitisPLoS One.  8. 2013
    2012 Enteric-delivered rapamycin enhances resistance of aged mice to pneumococcal pneumonia through reduced cellular senescenceExperimental Gerontology.  47:958-965. 2012
    2012 A role for glycosylated serine-rich repeat proteins in Gram-positive bacterial pathogenesisMolecular Oral Microbiology.  27:257-269. 2012
    2012 Prevalence and clonal distribution of pcpA, psrP and pilus-1 among pediatric isolates of streptococcus pneumoniaePLoS One.  7. 2012
    2012 Age-related defects in TLR2 signaling diminish the cytokine response by alveolar macrophages during murine pneumococcal pneumoniaExperimental Gerontology.  47:507-518. 2012
    2012 Impact of oral simvastatin therapy on acute lung injury in mice during pneumococcal pneumoniaBMC Microbiology.  12. 2012
    2012 Pneumococcal gene complex involved in resistance to extracellular oxidative stressInfection and Immunity.  80:1037-1049. 2012
    2012 Future perspective on host-pathogen interactions during bacterial biofilm formation within the nasopharynxFuture Microbiology.  7:227-239. 2012
    2011 Streptococcus pneumoniae in biofilms are unable to cause invasive disease due to altered virulence determinant productionPLoS One.  6. 2011
    2011 Biofilm and planktonic pneumococci demonstrate disparate immunoreactivity to human convalescent seraBMC Microbiology.  11. 2011
    2011 Changes in capsular serotype alter the surface exposure of pneumococcal adhesins and impact virulencePLoS One.  6. 2011
    2011 Cellular senescence increases expression of bacterial ligands in the lungs and is positively correlated with increased susceptibility to pneumococcal pneumoniaAging Cell.  10:798-806. 2011
    2011 Incidence of cardiovascular events after hospital admission for pneumoniaAmerican Journal of Medicine.  124:244-251. 2011
    2011 Rapamycin, but not resveratrol or simvastatin, extends life span of genetically heterogeneous mice 2011
    2011 Dysregulated inflammation as a risk factor for pneumonia in the elderlyAging and Disease.  2:487-500. 2011
    2011 Virulence Factors Involved in Passage of Francisella tularensis subsp. novicida Through an Air-Blood Barrier ModelJournal of Bioterrorism and Biodefense.  02. 2011
    2010 PsrP, a protective pneumococcal antigen, is highly prevalent in children with pneumonia and is strongly associated with clonal typeClinical and Vaccine Immunology.  17:1672-1678. 2010
    2010 Pneumococci: Immunology of the innate host responseRespirology.  15:1057-1063. 2010
    2010 The pneumococcal serine-rich repeat protein is an intraspecies bacterial adhesin that promotes bacterial aggregation in Vivo and in biofilmsPLoS Pathogens.  6:33-34. 2010
    2010 Early biofilm formation on microtiter plates is not correlated with the invasive disease potential of Streptococcus pneumoniaeMicrobial Pathogenesis.  48:124-130. 2010
    2010 Statins protect against fulminant pneumococcal infection and cytolysin toxicity in a mouse model of sickle cell diseaseJournal of Clinical Investigation.  120:627-635. 2010
    2010 Pneumococcal microbial surface components recognizing adhesive matrix molecules targeting of the extracellular matrixMolecular Microbiology.  77:1-5. 2010
    2009 Eμ-BCL10 mice exhibit constitutive activation of both canonical and noncanonical NF-κB pathways generating marginal zone (MZ) B-cell expansion as a precursor to splenic MZ lymphomaBlood.  114:4158-4168. 2009
    2009 Role played by psrP-secY2A2 (accessory region 34) in the invasive disease potential of streptococcus pneumoniaeJournal of Infectious Diseases.  200:1180-1181. 2009
    2009 Age-associated inflammation and Toll-like receptor dysfunction prime the lungs for pneumococcal pneumoniaJournal of Infectious Diseases.  200:546-554. 2009
    2009 The Streptococcus pneumoniae adhesin PsrP binds to Keratin 10 on lung cellsMolecular Microbiology.  73:663-679. 2009
    2009 Laminin receptor initiates bacterial contact with the blood brain barrier in experimental meningitis modelsJournal of Clinical Investigation.  119:1638-1646. 2009
    2008 Antibodies against PsrP, a novel Streptococcus pneumoniae adhesin, block adhesion and protect mice against pneumococcal challengeJournal of Infectious Diseases.  198:375-383. 2008
    2007 Assessment of molecular typing methods to determine invasiveness and to differentiate clones of Streptococcus pneumoniaeInfection, Genetics and Evolution.  7:708-716. 2007
    2007 Regions of Diversity 8, 9 and 13 contribute to Streptococcus pneumoniae virulenceBMC Microbiology.  7. 2007
    2007 Induction of pro- and anti-inflammatory molecules in a mouse model of pneumococcal pneumonia after influenza 2007
    2006 Platelet-activating factor receptor and innate immunity: Uptake of gram-positive bacterial cell wall into host cells and cell-specific pathophysiologyJournal of Immunology.  177:6182-6191. 2006
    2006 Identification of a candidate Streptococcus pneumoniae core genome and regions of diversity correlated with invasive pneumococcal diseaseInfection and Immunity.  74:4766-4777. 2006
    2006 Cell wall-mediated neuronal damage in early sepsisInfection and Immunity.  74:3783-3789. 2006
    2006 Erratum: β-arrestin 1 participates in platelet-activating factor receptor-mediated endocytosis of Streptococcus pneumoniae (Infection and Immunity (2005) 73, 12 (7827-7835))Infection and Immunity.  74:3078. 2006
    2006 Models of pneumococcal diseaseDrug Discovery Today: Disease Models.  3:69-75. 2006
    2006 Multifunctional role of choline binding protein G in pneumococcal pathogenesisInfection and Immunity.  74:821-829. 2006
    2005 β-arrestin 1 participates in platelet-activating factor receptor-mediated endocytosis of Streptococcus pneumoniaeInfection and Immunity.  73:7827-7835. 2005
    2005 Virulence in mice of pneumococcal clonal types with known invasive disease potential in humansJournal of Infectious Diseases.  192:791-800. 2005
    2005 Noninvasive monitoring of pneumococcal meningitis and evaluation of treatment efficacy in an experimental mouse modelMolecular Imaging.  4:137-142. 2005
    2004 Tissue-specific contributions of pneumococcal virulence factors to pathogenesisJournal of Infectious Diseases.  190:1661-1669. 2004
    2004 Microarray analysis of pneumococcal gene expression during invasive diseaseInfection and Immunity.  72:5582-5596. 2004
    2003 Organ-specific models of Streptococcus pneumoniae diseaseInfectious Diseases.  35:647-652. 2003
    2003 Defective developmental and function of Bcl10-deficient follicular, marginal zone and B1 B cellsNature Immunology.  4:857-865. 2003
    2001 Streptococcus pneumoniae PstS production is phosphate responsive and enhanced during growth in the murine peritoneal cavityInfection and Immunity.  69:7565-7571. 2001
    2001 Identification and characterization of an in vivo regulated D15/Oma87 homologue in Shigella flexneri using differential display polymerase chain reactionGene.  262:169-177. 2001
    2000 Peritoneal culture alters Streptococcus pneumoniae protein profiles and virulence propertiesInfection and Immunity.  68:6082-6086. 2000
    1997 Poor man's dot-blot apparatus 1997


    Year Title Altmetric
    2015 Streptococcus Pneumoniae: Molecular Mechanisms of Host-Pathogen Interactions 2015


    Year Title Altmetric
    2019 Streptococcus pneumoniae: Invasion and inflammation 2019
    2019 Streptococcus pneumoniae: Invasion and inflammation.  316-330. 2019
    2015 Mechanisms of Predisposition to Pneumonia: Infants, the Elderly, and Viral Infections.  363-382. 2015
    2015 Bacterial Interactions with Mucosal Epithelial Cells.  955-973. 2015
    2015 Altered phenotypes of biofilm and planktonic pneumococci modulate the host response within the nasopharynx and middle ear 2015
    2008 Aging, inflammation, and pneumococcal disease.  53-68. 2008
    2005 Bacterial interactions with mucosal epithelial cells.  753-767. 2005

    Research Overview

  • Dr. Orihuela's research focus is the host-pathogen interactions responsible for the development of invasive pneumococcal disease. Most recently this includes examining the how Streptococcus pneumoniae takes advantage of dying host cells in the airway, how S. pneumoniae translocate across vascular endothelial cells to invade organs during bacteremia, and dissecting the molecular basis and immunological consequence of bacterial invasion of the heart. His laboratory routinely uses knockout mice, isogenic deletion and complemented mutants of S. pneumoniae, “omic” technologies (e.g. genomic, transcriptomic, proteomic), therapeutic drug treatments, CRISPR/Cas9 gene edited cell lines, and fluorescent and electron microscopy.
  • Principal Investigator On

  • Capsule Protects Intracellular Pneumococci during Vascular Endothelial Cell Translocation  awarded by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH/DHHS
  • Cardiac Microlesion Formation During Invasive Pneumococcal Disease  awarded by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH/DHHS
  • Cardiac Microlesion Formation during Invasive Pneumococcal Disease  awarded by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH/DHHS
  • Caspase-Associated Necroptosis of Cardiomyocytes  awarded by American Heart Association
  • Cellular Senescence Due to Invasive Pneumococcal Disease Leads to Cardiac Interstitial Fibrosis  awarded by UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS HEALTH SCIENCE CENTER (HOUSTON)
  • Dual RNA-seq for Characterization of the Streptococcus Pneumoniae and Host Transciptomes during Bacteremia/ Invasive Disease  awarded by University of Maryland
  • Host-bacterial Determinants of Cardiac Damage and Invasive Pneumococcal Disease  awarded by Burroughs Wellcome Fund
  • Influenza Secondary Pneumococcal Models of Infection  awarded by University of Maryland
  • Inhibition of Necroptosis During Inflamm-Aging and Pneumonia  awarded by National Institute on Aging/NIH/DHHS
  • Integrative Genomic and Transcriptomic Studies of Serotype 3 Pneumococcal Disease together with a Focus on Influenza Virus Co-Infection  awarded by UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND (BALTIMORE)
  • Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Organ Penetration in Disseminated Pneumococcal Infection  awarded by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH/DHHS
  • Pneumococcal Biofilm Formation is SpxB Dependent  awarded by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH/DHHS
  • PspA Binds Necroptotic Cells to Cause Disease and Transmit  awarded by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH/DHHS
  • Resident Cardiac Macrophage Dysfunction and Pneumonia-Associated Adverse Cardiac Events  awarded by American Heart Association
  • Education And Training

  • St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Infectious Diseases, Postdoctoral Fellowship
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Microbiological Sciences and Immunology, University of Texas System : Medical Branch 2001
  • Bachelor of Science or Mathematics in Biology, Baylor University 1996
  • Full Name

  • Carlos Orihuela