Susan Madison-Antenucci, Ph.D.

Susan Madison-Antenucci, Ph.D.

Director, Parasitology Laboratory
Associate Clinical Professor - Biomedical Sciences and Assistant Professor – Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, University at Albany
Deputy Editor for PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Ph.D., Duke University (1994)
Postdoctoral training: University of Alabama at Birmingham
(518) 473-2692
Fax: (518) 486-7971

Research Interests

My laboratory develops improved methods of detecting, identifying and characterizing parasites that infect humans, as well as investigating pathogenicity and sources of infection.  Because culture is not possible as a means of enhancing detection of most parasites, sensitive methods are required to extract and amplify minute amounts of organism from complex matrices.  These capabilities advance the diagnostic power well beyond what has been available through classical microscopic techniques. We have developed and validated numerous RT-PCR assays for improved sensitivity and more precise identification. These include assays to detect Babesia microti, Giardia duodenalis, Cyclospora cayetanensis as well as multiplex assays to identify Plasmodium, Entamoeba and Cryptosporidium at the species level.  We also use nucleic acid amplification and sequencing to identify helminths.

My lab has capitalized on advances in deep sequencing to characterize malarial parasites for drug resistance. In collaboration with the CDC we are using targeted next generation sequencing to identify genetic relationships in Cyclospora in order to reveal infections that resulted from a common source.  We are also testing suspected foods to more quickly identify the cause of outbreaks. 

We work with epidemiologists in New York State and New York City, and use molecular methods to identify sources of contamination and link them to human cases of infection. My lab has explored the pathogenicity of Entamoeba dispar, which has been previously thought not to cause disease, but is emerging as a possible sexually transmitted parasite. Together with colleagues in the NYC Environmental Protection Bureau of Water Supply, Water Quality Science & Research we have investigated species of Cryptosporidium causing disease in New York City residents.

Select Publications
Mergen K, Espina N, Teal A, Madison-Antenucci S. Detecting Cryptosporidium in Stool Samples Submitted to a Reference Laboratory. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2020; 103 (1): 421-427. DOI: 10.4269/ajtmh.19-0792
Madison-Antenucci S, Wormser GP, Levin AE, Wong SJ. Frequency and magnitude of seroreactivity to Babesia microti in 245 patients diagnosed by PCR in New York State. Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis. 2020; 97 (1): 115008. DOI: 10.1016/j.diagmicrobio.2020.115008
Talundzic E, Ravishankar S, Kelley J, Patel D, Plucinski M, Schmedes S, Ljolje D, Clemons B, Madison-Antenucci S, Arguin PM, Lucchi NW, Vannberg F, Udhayakumar V. Next-Generation Sequencing and Bioinformatics Protocol for Malaria Drug Resistance Marker Surveillance. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2018; 62 (4): e02474-17. DOI: 10.1128/AAC.02474-17
Figgatt M, Mergen K, Kimelstein D, Mahoney D, Newman A, Nicholas D, Ricupero K, Cafiero T, Corry D, Ade J, Kurpiel K, Madison-Antenucci S, and Anand M. Giardiasis Outbreak Associated with Asymptomatic Food Handlers in New York State, 2015. J Food Prot. 2017; (April 12): 837-841. DOI: 10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-16-415
Madison-Antenucci S, Relich RF, Doyle L, Espina N, Fuller D, Karchmer T, Lainesse A, Mortensen JE, Pancholi P, Veros W, Harrington SM. Multicenter Evaluation of BD Max Enteric Parasite Real-Time PCR Assay for Detection of Giardia duodenalis, Cryptosporidium hominis, Cryptosporidium parvum, and Entamoeba histolytica. J Clin Microbiol. 2016; 54 (11): 2681-2688. DOI: 10.1128/JCM.00765-16