Catherine Volle

Assistant Professor of Microbiology and Biochemistry

Catherine Volle

Catherine became interested in science at age 10, when she decided to become a veterinarian. She remained on that career path until the beginning of her second year as a research associate for Dr. Megan Nunez, where she investigated the biophysics underlying predation by the bacteria Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus. She applied to graduate programs intending to study marine microbiology, however, she chose to attend Brown University’s program in Molecular and Cellular Biology and Biochemistry because she was impressed by the exciting basic science that was taking place. She joined the laboratory of Dr. Sarah Delaney in the Brown chemistry department, where she studied the effect of oxidative damage on hairpin DNA and the behavior of trinucleotide repeats in the nucleosome.

After completing her degree at Brown, she moved to the National Institutes of Health to continue studying chromatin. In her first year she was awarded the Sally Rosen Kaplan fellowship for women in cancer research. During her time at the NIH, she realized that she did not like big research and that she would be much happier teaching. She served as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University and Trinity Washington University, and joined the Cottey faculty in 2015. In addition to her teaching, she is always recruiting students to join her research group.

Catherine enjoys scuba diving, knitting, using microbes to make food, and walking with her dog Fisher.

Selected Publications:

  • Catherine B. Volle, Megan A. Ferguson, Katherine E. Aidala, Eileen M. Spain, and Megan E. Núñez. (2008) “Quantitative Changes in the Elasticity and Adhesive Properties of Prey Cells During Predation by Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus 109J” Langmuir 24 8102-8110.
  • Catherine B. Volle, Megan A. Ferguson, Katherine E. Aidala, Eileen M. Spain, and Megan E. Núñez. (2008) “Spring Constants and Adhesive Properties of Native Bacterial Biofilm Cells Measured by Atomic Force Microscopy” Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces 67 32-40.
  • Catherine B. Volle, Daniel A. Jarem, and Sarah Delaney. (2012) “Trinucleotide Repeat DNA Alters Structure to Minimize the Thermodynamic Impact of 8-oxo-7,8-dihydroguanine” Biochemistry 51 52-62.
  • Catherine B. Volle and Sarah Delaney. (2012) “CAG/CTG Repeats Alter Affinity for the Histone Core and Positioning of DNA in the Nucleosome” Biochemistry 51 9814-9825.
  • Catherine B. Volle and Yamini Dalal. (2014) “Histone Variants: Tricksters of the Chromatin World” Current Opinions in Genetics and Development 25 8-14.

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