Suzanne Ishaq


  • University of Vermont, 2015, Ph.D. in Animal, Nutrition, and Food Sciences
  • University of Vermont, 2007, B.S. in Animal Science

Brief Biography

The central efforts of my lab are to increase our understanding of the interactions between animal (or human) hosts and their resident microbiota, and investigate solutions for using microorganisms to resolve disordered communities and host health. My ongoing and proposed research activities investigate the microbiome in several animal hosts with implications for a wide variety of research applications and to health, agriculture, and ecological management sectors inside of Maine and beyond. In particular, much of my work centers on the importance of spatial location in understanding host-microbe interactions and how to harness them. Currently, my lab is focusing on the role of gut microbes in creating beneficial compounds from the diet which can reduce inflammation in hosts, microbial community acquisition and health in several marine animal species, and the connection between host-microbe-environment.

AVS 254 Introduction to Animal Microbiomes
AVS 401/402 Capstone in Animal Science
AVS 454/554 DNA Sequencing Data Analysis Lab

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Founder, Microbes and Social Equity Working Group can be reached here.

Research Interests

  • Immunology / Inflammation / Hematology
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Host-associated microbiome
  • Diet and gut microbiome

Selected Publications

  • Holcomb, L., Holman, J., Hurd, M., Lavoie, B., Colucci, L., Hunt, B., Hunt, T., Kinney, M., Pathak, J., Moses, P., Mawe, G.M., Perry, E., Stratigakis, A., Zhang, T., Ishaq, S.L., Li, Y. 2023. Early life exposure to broccoli sprouts confers stronger protection against enterocolitis development in an immunological mouse model of inflammatory bowel disease. In review.
  • Holman, J., L. Colucci, L. Baudewyns, D., Balkan, J., Hunt, T., Hunt, B., Kinney, M., Holcomb, L., Stratigakis, A., Chen. G., Moses, P., Mawe, G.M., Zhang, T., Li, Y., Ishaq, S.L. 2023. Steamed broccoli sprouts alleviate DSS-induced inflammation and retain gut microbial biogeography in mice. mSystems. Accepted
  • Ishaq, S.L., Hosler, S., Dankwa, A., Jekielek, P., Brady, D.C., Grey, E., Haskell, H., Lasley-Rasher, R., Pepperman, K., Perry, J., Beal, B., Bowden, T.J. 2023. Bacterial community trends associated with sea scallop, Placopecten magellanicus, larvae in a hatchery system. Aquaculture Reports 32: 101693.
  • Ishaq, S.L., Turner, S.M., Lee, G., Tudor, M.S., MacRae, J.D., Hamlin, H., Bouchard, D. 2023. Water temperature and disease alters bacterial diversity and cultivability from American Lobster (Homarus americanus) shells. iScience 26(5): 106606.
  • Holman, J., Hurd, M., Moses, P., Mawe, G., Zhang, T., Ishaq, S.L., Li, Y. 2022. Interplay of Broccoli/Broccoli Sprout Bioactives with Gut Microbiota in Reducing Inflammation in Inflammatory Bowel Diseases. The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry 113:109238.
  • Robinson, J.M., Redvers, N., Camargo, A., Bosch, C.A., Breed, M.F., Brenner, L.A., Carney, M.A., Chauhan, A., Dasari, M., Dietz, L.G., Friedman, M., Grieneisen, L., Hoisington, A.J., Horve, P.F., Hunter, A., Jech, S., Jorgensen, A., Lowry, C.A., Man, I., Mhuireach, G., Navarro-Pérez, E., Ritchie, E.G., Stewart, J.D., Watkins, H., Weinstein, P., and Ishaq, S.L. 2022. Twenty important research questions in microbial exposure and social equity. mSystems 7(1): e01240-21.
  • Ishaq, S.L., Parada Flores, F.J., Wolf, P.G., Bonilla, C.Y., Carney, M.A., Benezra, A., Wissel, E., Friedman, M., DeAngelis, K.M., Robinson, J.M., Fahimipour, A.K., Manus, M.B., Grieneisen, L., Dietz, L.G., Chauhan, A., Pathak, A., Kuthyar, S., Stewart, J.D., Dasari, M.R., Nonnamaker, E., Choudoir, M., Horve, P.F., Zimmerman, N.B., Kozik, A.J., Darling, K.W., Romero-Olivares, A.L., Hariharan, J., Farmer, N., Maki, K., Collier, J.L., O’Doherty, K., Letourneau, J., Kline, J., Moses, P.L., Morar, N. 2021. Introducing the Microbes and Social Equity Working Group: Considering the Microbial Components of Social, Environmental, and Health Justice. mSystems 6(4): 00471-21.

Link to Dr. Ishaq’s CV