University of Oregon postdoctoral fellow Caitlin Kowalski is one of five women to win the 2023 L’Oréal USA For Women in Science fellowship for her work on the fungi genus Malassezia.
Malassezia is a skin resident yeast that impacts the bacterial skin pathogen Staphylococcus aureus. Her research is focused on finding a way to protect humans from skin-related infections and how the fungi can support skin health.
Kowalski works in the Barber Lab, led by associate professor Matt Barber in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Biology. The Barber Lab studies the evolution of host-microbe interactions.
The L’Oréal fellowship will help fund Kowalski’s research on the biology of Malassezia and generate preliminary data for her future lab. The fellowship also supports her mentorship of women in STEM, including two UO undergraduates.