Academic Affiliations

Assistant Professor

  • Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, and the Perinatology Research Branch, NICHD/NIH/DHHS
Education and Training
  • Ph.D. – Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, and Behavior, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan

Research & Professional Accomplishments
  • Authored and co-authored 35 peer-reviewed articles in national and international journals
  • Associate Editor for the journals Microbiome, Animal Microbiome, and Frontiers in Ecology & Evolution
  • Evaluated sterility of the upper reproductive tract in humans, non-human primates, and mice
  • Used molecular microbiological techniques to demonstrate that most intra-amniotic infections are the result of an ascending invasion
Research Interests
  • Perinatal microbiology
  • Etiologies of intra-amniotic infection
  • Role of vaginal microbiome in spontaneous preterm birth
  • Comparative genomics of vaginal microbes in pregnancy
  • Paradigms of sterility in perinatology
Awards & Recognition
  • Invited speaker for seven domestic and international conferences
  • Research featured in the documentary The Microbes that Rule Our World
  • Two articles recommended on Faculty 1000
  • Wayne State University School of Medicine College Teaching Award
Select Publications
  • Motomura K, Romero R, Xu Y, Theis KR, Galaz J, Winters AD, Slutsky R, Garcia-Flores V, Zou C, Levenson D, Para R, Ahmad MM, Miller D, Hsu CD, Gomez-Lopez N. Intra-amniotic infection with Ureaplasma parvum causes preterm birth and neonatal mortality that are prevented by treatment with clarithromycin. mBio. 2020 Jun 23; 11:e00797-20. PMID: 32576673
  • Theis KR, Romero R, Winters AD, Jobe AH, Gomez-Lopez N. Lack of evidence for microbiota in the placental and fetal tissues of rhesus macaques. mSphere. 2020 May 6; 5:e00210-20. PMID: 32376701
  • Theis KR, Romero R, Greenberg JM, Winters AD, Garcia-Flores V, Motomura K, Ahmad MM, Galaz J, Arenas-Hernandez M, Gomez-Lopez N. No consistent evidence for microbiota in murine placental and fetal tissues. mSphere. 2020 Feb 26; 5:e00933-19. PMID: 32102944
  • Theis KR, Romero R, Motomura K, Galaz J, Winters AD, Pacora P, Miller D, Slutsky R, Florova V, Levenson D, Para R, Varrey A, Kacerovsky M, Hsu CD, Gomez-Lopez N. Microbial burden and inflammasome activation in amniotic fluid of patients with preterm prelabor rupture of membranes. J Perinat Med. 2020 Feb 25; 48:115-131. PMID: 31927525
  • Neff AS, Theis KR, Burghardt PR. Development and preliminary validation of a feasible procedure for isolating RNA from fiber-adherent bacteria in human stool. Med Sci Monit Basic Res. 2019 Nov 26; 25:238-244. PMID: 31767826
  • Romero R, Gomez-Lopez N, Winters AD, Jung E, Shaman M, Bieda J, Panaitescu B, Pacora P, Erez O, Greenberg JM, Ahmad MM, Hsu CD, Theis KR. Evidence that intra-amniotic infections are often the result of an ascending invasion - a molecular microbiological study. J Perinat Med. 2019 Nov 26; 47:915-931. PMID: 31693497
  • Winters AD, Romero R, Gervasi MT, Gomez-Lopez N, Tran MR, Garcia-Flores V, Pacora P, Jung E, Hassan SS, Hsu CD, Theis KR. Does the endometrial cavity have a molecular microbial signature? Sci Rep. 2019 Jul 9; 9:9905. PMID: 31289304
  • Theis KR, Romero R, Winters AD, Greenberg JM, Gomez-Lopez N, Alhousseini A, Bieda J, Maymon E, Pacora P, Fettweis JM, Buck GA, Jefferson KK, Strauss JF 3rd, Erez O, Hassan SS. Does the human placenta delivered at term have a microbiota? Results of cultivation, quantitative real-time PCR, 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and metagenomics. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2019 Mar; 220:267.e1-267.e39. PMID: 30832984


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