Crista Wadsworth Headshot

Crista Wadsworth

Assistant Professor

Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences
College of Science

585-475-7961
Office Location

Crista Wadsworth

Assistant Professor

Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences
College of Science

Education

BA, Smith College; Ph.D., Tufts University

Bio

Dr. Wadsworth is an evolutionary biologist whose research focuses on antimicrobial resistance in bacteria. Bacterial resistance is one of the greatest and most critical public health crises of our time, raising the specter of untreatable infections and a return to the pre-antibiotic era. Research in the Wadsworth Lab is currently motivated by elucidating the mechanisms of resistance in pathogen species, and characterizing the reservoir of resistance alleles available to pathogens in commensal species and their potential for horizontal transfer. Related topics of interest include microbial speciation, niche specialization, and adaptive evolution. The lab uses a wide array of experimental approaches, combining genomics and wet-lab techniques. 

Dr. Wadsworth joined RIT in 2019 after a postdoctoral fellowship at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health with Dr. Yonatan Grad. She earned her Ph.D. from Tufts University in 2016, and her B.A. from Smith College in 2010. Dr. Wadsworth is currently a Visiting Scientist at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

585-475-7961

Areas of Expertise

Select Scholarship

Journal Paper
Murphy, Thomas C, et al. "Draft genome sequences of three penicillin-resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae strains isolated from Cincinnati, Ohio in 1994." Microbiology Resource Announcements 10. 11 (2021): e00074-21. Print.
Schroeter, Marissa N, et al. "Isolation, whole-genome sequencing, and annotation of three unclassified antibiotic-producing bacteria Enterobacter sp. RIT 637, Pseudomonas sp. RIT and Deinococcus sp. RIT 780." Microbiology Resource Announcements 10. 48 (2021): e00863-21. Print.
Břinda, Karel, et al. "Rapid Inference of Antibiotic Resistance and Susceptibility by Genomic Neighbour Typing." Nature Microbiology 5. (2020): 455–464. Print.
Wadsworth, Crista B., Yuta Okada, and Erik B. Dopman. "Phenology-dependent Cold Exposure and Thermal Performance of Ostrinia Nubilalis Ecotypes." BMC Evolutionary Biology 20. 34 (2020): 1-14. Print.
Arnold, Brian, et al. "Fine-scale Haplotype Structure Reveals Strong Signatures of Positive Selection in a Recombining Bacterial Pathogen." Molecular Biology and Evolution 37. 2 (2020): 417–428. Print.
Fiore, Michael A., et al. "Exploration of the Neisseria resistome reveals resistance mechanisms in commensals that may be acquired by N. gonorrhoeae through horizontal gene transfer." Antibiotics 9. 10 (2020): 656. Print.
Thomas, Seema G, et al. "Aeromonas hydrophila RIT668 and Citrobacter portucalensis RIT669 – potential zoonotic pathogens isolated from spotted turtles." Microorganisms 8. (2020): 1805. Print.
Kozak, Genevieve M, et al. "Genomic basis of circannual rhythm in the European corn borer moth." Current Biology 29. (2019): 3501-3509. Print.
Wadsworth, Crista B, et al. "Impact of Species Diversity on the Design of RNA-Based Diagnostics for Antibiotic Resistance in Neisseria gonorrhoeae." Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 63. 8 (2019): e00549-19. Print.

Currently Teaching

BIOL-126
1 Credits
This course is an introduction to laboratory work in life sciences. The laboratory work is project based, and the subject matter of the project(s) may vary. The course is designed to show the huge scope of biology and will encompass some molecular biology and bioinformatics techniques connect with organismal and ecological biology.
BIOL-295
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed student project or research involving laboratory work, computer modeling, or theoretical calculations that could be considered of an original nature. The level of study is appropriate for students in their first three years of study.
BIOL-298
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum. The level of study is appropriate for student in their first three years of study.
BIOL-301
1 - 4 Credits
This course allows students to assist in a class or laboratory for which they have previously earned credit. The student will assist the instructor in the operation of the course. Assistance by the student may include fielding questions, helping in workshops, and assisting in review sessions. In the case of labs, students may also be asked to help with supervising safety practices, waste manifestation, and instrumentation.
BIOL-340
4 Credits
The overall goal of this course is to familiarize students with the theory and analysis of genomics data. Students will survey topics including the structure, organization, and expression of the genome in a diverse array of organisms ranging from microbes to humans. Students will also become familiar with the analysis of next generation ‘omics-type data through a series of computational activities and problem sets. A hands-on laboratory component will guide students through a rigorous investigation of genomes.
BIOL-495
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed student project or research involving laboratory or field work, computer modeling, or theoretical calculations that could be considered of an original nature. The level of study is appropriate for students in their final two years of study.
BIOL-498
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum. The level of study is appropriate for student in their final two years of study.
BIOL-798
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed, graduate level tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum.

In the News