Nathan Crook joined NC State in January 2018 as a Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program cluster hire in Microbiomes and Complex Microbial Communities. An assistant professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, he is broadly interested in engineering microbial communities, whether they are located in an industrial, agricultural or medical setting. To perform this engineering, his lab develops and applies novel high-throughput forward engineering and genomic analysis methods. Crook’s lab currently studies colonization and gene expression in probiotic organisms, and applies this knowledge toward delivery of additional gene functions to the human body. His interests include engineering both commensal fungi (the “mycobiome”) as well as bacteria. He is also excited to investigate the evolutionary forces which shape genomes within microbial communities. The Crook Lab blends experimentation, theoretical modeling, and computational analysis to build, predict and interpret novel microbial community architectures.
Crook received his Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from the California Institute of Technology. He received his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in the laboratory of Hal Alper. Prior to joining the NC State faculty, he was a postdoctoral researcher in the Center for Genome Sciences at the Washington University in Saint Louis School of Medicine in the laboratory of Gautam Dantas. Crook is excited to motivate and educate the next generation of scientists and engineers in the classroom and research laboratory.