Kerri Coon

Prof. Kerri Coon

Kerri Coon

Assistant Professor

740 Russell Laboratories
1630 Linden Drive
Madison, WI 53706


Interests: Insect-microbe interactions, vector-borne diseases

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Ph.D. Entomology, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
B.S. Biology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA

Research in my lab centers on insect-microbe interactions, with a current focus on those between mosquitoes and their gut microbiota. We integrate field and lab-based experiments with bioinformatic approaches to tease apart the mechanisms by which microbes regulate fundamental processes in their mosquito hosts, from their development and reproduction to their ability to transmit disease-causing agents to humans and other mammals.

Other research topics of interest in my lab include: i) the ecology and evolution of host-associated microbial communities, ii) the interplay between resident and pathogenic microbes, iii) and the mechanisms underlying host-microbe specificity.

Learn more about our research program here:

Physiology of Insects (Entomology 321; 3 Credits)


Research publications

  1. Coon, K.L., Valzania, L., Brown, M.R., Strand, M.R. 2020. Predaceous Toxorhynchites mosquitoes require a living gut microbiota to develop. Proc. R. Soc. B. 287(1919):20192705. (Selected for cover)
  2. Raymann, K., Coon, K.L., Shaffer, Z., Salisbury, S., Moran, N.A. 2018. Pathogenicity of Serratia marcescens strains in honey bees. mBio 9(5):e01649-18.
  3. Valzania, L., Martinson, V.E., Harrison, R., Boyd, B., Coon, K.L., Brown, M.R., Strand, M.R. 2018. Both living bacteria and eukaryotes in the mosquito gut promote growth of larvae. PLoS Negl. Trop. Dis. 12(7):e0006638.
  4. Valzania, L., Coon, K.L., Vogel, K.J., Brown, M.R., Strand, M.R. 2018. Hypoxia-induced transcription factor signaling is essential for larval growth of the mosquito Aedes aegyptiProc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 115(3):457-65.
  5. Coon, K.L., Valzania, L., McKinney, D.A., Vogel, K.J., Brown, M.R., Strand, M. R. 2017. Bacteria-mediated hypoxia functions as a signal for mosquito development. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 114(27):E5362-9.
  6. Vogel, K.J., Valzania, L., Coon, K.L., Brown, M.R., Strand, M.R. 2017. Transcriptome sequencing reveals large-scale changes in axenic Aedes aegypti larvae. PLoS Negl. Trop. Dis. 11(1):e0005273.
  7. Coon, K.L., Brown, M.R., Strand, M.R. 2016. Mosquitoes host communities of bacteria that are essential for development but vary greatly between local habitats. Mol. Ecol. 25(22):5806-26.
  8. Coon, K.L., Brown, M.R., Strand, M.R. 2016. Gut bacteria differentially affect egg production in the anautogenous mosquito Aedes aegypti and facultatively autogenous mosquito Aedes atropalpus (Diptera: Culicidae). Parasit. Vectors 9(1):375.
  9. Coon, K.L., Vogel, K.J., Brown, M.R., Strand, M.R. 2014. Mosquitoes rely on their gut microbiota for development. Mol. Ecol. 23(11):2727-39.

Book Chapters & Reviews

  1. Coon, K.L., Strand, M.R. In press. Gut microbiome assembly and function in mosquitoes. In J.M. Drake, M. Bonsall, M.R. Strand (Eds.), Current Topics in the Population Biology of Infectious Diseases. Oxford University Press, New York, NY USA.
  2. Vogel, K.J., Coon, K.L. 2020. Functions and mechanisms of symbionts of insect disease vectors. In K.M. Oliver, J.A. Russell (Eds.), Advances in Insect Physiology, Volume 58: Mechanisms Underlying Microbial Symbiosis, pp. 233-75. Academic Press, Cambridge, MA USA.

*Lab members are in bold

Program Info

Please visit my lab’s website for more information about our research program: