The O'Donnell lab studies interactions between neurotropic viruses, infected neurons, and infiltrating immune cells in the brain. Specifically, we address how the various immune cells and cytokines impact on neurodevelopment and function during neonatal CNS infections. Our group utilizes a mouse model of central nervous system infection (NSE-CD46+ mice) to induce inflammation in the brain through a neuron-restricted measles virus infection. Current projects in the lab involve studying how inflammatory cytokines alter cell fate decisions and survival of neural precursor cells in the brain, how the adaptive immune response leads to neuronal loss in the neonatal CNS, and how an anti-viral response in the adult brain affects behavior and memory.

Lab Publications


Chandwani, MN, Creisher, PS, O'Donnell, LA. 2019. Understanding the Role of Antiviral Cytokines and Chemokines on Neural Stem/Progenitor Cell Activity and Survival. Viral Immunology. 32: 15-24.


Ganesan P, Chandwani MN, Creisher PS, Bohn L, O'Donnell LA. 2018. The neonatal anti-viral response fails to control measles virus spread in neurons despite interferon-gamma expression and a Th1-like cytokine profile. Journal of Neuroimmunology. 316: 80-97.

O'Donnell LA, Guarascio AJ. 2017. The intersection of antimicrobial stewardship and microbiology: educating the next generation of health care professionals. FEMS Microbiology Letters. 364(1).

Covvey JR, Guarascio AJ, O'Donnell LA, Tidgewell KJ. 2017. Development and Implementation of a Global Health Elective with a Drug Discovery Game for Pharmacy Students. Pharmacy (Basel). 5(3).

Fantetti, KN, Gray, EL, Ganesan, P, Kulkarni, A, O'Donnell, LA. 2016. Interferon gamma protects neonatal neural stem/progenitor cells during measles virus infection of the brain. Journal of Neuroinflammation. 13(1):107.

O'Donnell LA, Meng WS, Andrick BJ, Borello AM. 2016. A Bioinformatics Practicum to Develop Student Understanding of Immunological Rejection of Protein Drugs. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. 80(9):147.

Kulkarni A, Scully TJ, O'Donnell LA. 2016. The antiviral cytokine interferon-gamma restricts neural stem/progenitor cell proliferation through activation of STAT1 and modulation of retinoblastoma protein phosphorylation. Journal of Neuroscience Research. doi:10.1002/jnr.23987

Kulkarni A, Ganesan P, O'Donnell LA. 2016. Interferon Gamma: Influence on Neural Stem Cell Function in Neurodegenerative and Neuroinflammatory Disease. Clinical Medicine Insights: Pathology. 9(Suppl 1):9-19.

O'Donnell, LA, Perry, MW, & Doup, DR. 2015. The Emerging Microbe Project: Developing clinical care plans based on pathogen identification and clinical case studies. Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education. 6(2):217-22.

Vasu, D, O'Donnell, LA, & Wildfong, P. 2015. Influence of dosage form, formulation and delivery device on olfactory deposition and clearance: Enhancement of nose-to-CNS uptake. Journal of Pharmaceutical Innovation. 10(3): 200-210. Chosen for cover image.

Leak, RK, O'Donnell, LA, & Surratt, CK. 2015. Using active learning to teach pharmacology graduate students how to write an NIH grant proposal. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. 79(9): Article 138.

O'Donnell, LA, Henkins, KM, Kulkarni, A, Matullo, CM, Balachandran, S, Pattisapu, AK, Rall, GF. 2015. Interferon Gamma Induces Protective Non-Canonical Signaling Pathways in Primary Neurons. Journal of Neurochemistry. 135(2): 309-322.

Guarascio, AJ, Faust, AC, Sheperd, L, & O'Donnell, LA. 2015. Ebola Virus Disease: Roles and Considerations for Pharmacists. The Annals of Pharmacotherapy. 49(2):247-9.

Andrick BJ, Schwab AI, Cauley B, O'Donnell LA, Meng WS. 2015. Predicting Hemagglutinin MHC-II Ligand Analogues in Anti-TNF╬▒ Biologics: Implications for Immunogenicity of Pharmaceutical Proteins. PLoS One. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0135451.

O'Donnell, LA. Sherris Medical Microbiology as a Resource for Doctor of Pharmacy Students. 2012. Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education. 3(1): 102-103.

O'Donnell LA, Conway S, Rose RW, Nicolas E, Slifker M, Balachandran S, Rall GF. 2012. STAT1-Independent Control of a Neurotropic Measles Virus Challenge in Primary Neurons and Infected Mice. Journal of Immunology. 188(4):1915-23.