Albert Jonathan Auguste, Ph.D.

Professional Education

Present  Postdoctoral Fellow
Department of Pathology, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas, USA. Mentor: Dr. Scott C. Weaver.
2011  PhD Molecular Genetics
University of the West Indies (U.W.I), St Augustine, Trinidad.
Thesis title: Genetic diversity, evolutionary and spatio-temporal dynamics of sylvatic mosquito-borne viruses in Trinidad and the Americas. Mentor: Dr. Christine V. F. Carrington.
2006 BSc Biochemistry with Biotechnology
University of the West Indies (U.W.I), St Augustine, Trinidad

Scholarships and Awards

2007 University of the West Indies Postgraduate Scholarship
2008 American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH)
Travel award
2011 3rd place for a poster presentation. UWI, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Research day).
2011 (Declined) American Society for Microbiology – Center Disease Prevention and Control postdoctoral research fellowship in infectious diseases.
2011 PhD thesis awarded with high commendation in Molecular Genetics, University of the West Indies, Trinidad.
2012 Robert E. Shope International Fellowship in Infectious Diseases (2011)
2012 Most Outstanding PhD thesis at the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine campus (2008 - 2011) in the field of science.
2013 McLaughlin Postdoctoral Fellowship

Professional Societies and Affiliations

  • Member, American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
  • Member, Tropical Medicine Cluster: Infectious Diseases (UWI)

Research Interests

My primary research interest is ecological and evolutionary factors involved in emergence, dispersal and maintenance of RNA viruses, and in particular, arboviruses. My current focus as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) is on the elucidation of genetic determinants of arbovirus virulence, host specificity and transmissibility. My project aims to reconstruct ancestral genomes of eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV), create infectious clones of inferred ancestral and contemporaneous sequences and characterize their growth characteristics, virulence and pathogenicity using animal models, in vivo vector studies and in vitro techniques.

I am also interested in sequencing and characterizing novel viruses detected in field-collected mosquitoes or archived virus isolates from the World Reference Center for Emerging Viruses and Arboviruses, located at UTMB Galveston.

Publications: Articles in peer reviewed journals

  1. Carrington CV, Foster JE, Zhu HC, Zhang JX, Smith GJ, Thompson N, Auguste AJ, Ramkissoon V, Adesiyun AA, Guan Y. Detection and phylogenetic analysis of group 1 coronaviruses in South American bats. Emerg Infect Dis. 2008 Dec; 14 (12): 1890-3.
  2. Auguste AJ, Pybus OG, Carrington CV. Evolution and dispersal of St. Louis encephalitis virus in the Americas. Infect Genet Evol. 2009 Jul; 9 (4): 709-15.
  3. Kim DY, Guzman H, Bueno R Jr, Dennett JA, Auguste AJ, Carrington CV, Popov VL, Weaver SC, Beasley DW, Tesh RB. Characterization of Culex Flavivirus (Flaviviridae) strains isolated from mosquitoes in the United States and Trinidad. Virology. 2009 Mar 30; 386 (1): 154-9.
  4. Auguste AJ, Volk SM, Arrigo NC, Martinez R, Thompson N, Ramkissoon V, Adams AP, Adesiyun AA, Chadee DD, Foster JE, Tesh RB, Weaver SC, Carrington CVF. Isolation and Phylogenetic Characterization of Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis Virus subtype IIIA (Mucambo virus strain) in Trinidad. Virology. 2009 Sep 15; 392 (1): 123-30.
  5. Auguste AJ, Lemey P, Pybus OG, Suchard MA, Salas RA, Adesiyun AA, Barrett AD, Tesh RB, Weaver SC, and Carrington CV. Mechanisms of Yellow fever virus maintenance in Trinidad and dispersal in the Americas. J Virol. 2010. Oct; 84(19): 9967-77.
  6. Auguste AJ, Adams AP, Arrigo NC, Martinez R, Amelia P.A. Travassos Da Rosa, Adesiyun AA, Chadee DD, Tesh RB, Carrington CVF, and Weaver SC. Isolation and Characterization of Sylvatic Mosquito-borne Viruses in Trinidad: Enzootic transmission and a new potential vector of Mucambo virus. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2010 Dec; 83(6):1262-5.
  7. Carrington CV and Auguste AJ. Evolutionary and ecological factors underlying the tempo and distribution of yellow fever virus activity. Infect Genet Evol. 2013 Jan;13:198-210.
  8. Thompson NN, Auguste AJ, Coombs D, Blitvich BJ, Carrington CV, da Rosa AP, Wang E, Chadee DD, Drebot MA, Tesh RB, Weaver SC, Adesiyun AA. Serological evidence of flaviviruses and alphaviruses in livestock and wildlife in Trinidad. Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis. 2012 Nov; 12(11):969-78.
  9. Auguste AJ, Carrington CV, Forrester NL, Popov VL, Guzman H, Widen SG, Wood TG, Weaver SC, Tesh RB. Characterization of a novel Negevirus and a novel Bunyavirus isolated from Culex (Culex) declarator mosquitoes in Trinidad. J Gen Virol [Accepted Nov 12th 2013]

Conference Presentations

  • Auguste AJ, Singh S, Carrington CVF, Ramdath DD. Allelic and genotypic frequency of the gene encoding plasma cell membrane glycoprotein-1 (PC-1) in Trinidadian newborns. Presented at Caribbean Health Research Council Meeting, May 2007, Jamaica.
  • Auguste AJ, Dunham EJ, Pybus OG, Holmes EC, Carrington CVF. Migration and transmission history of St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV). Oral presentation at 56th ASTMH Meeting, 4 - 8 November 2007, Philadelphia and presented as a poster at the 13th International Bioinformatics Workshop on Virus Evolution and Molecular Epidemiology, September 2008 in Lisbon, Portugal.
  • Allicock OM, Auguste AJ, Dunham EJ, Pybus OG, Holmes EC, Carrington CVF. Genetic diversity and positive selection in Eastern equine encephalitis virus. Poster presented at 56th ASTMH Meeting, 4 - 8 November 2007, Philadelphia.
  • Carrington CVF, Foster JE, Zhu HC, Zhang JX, Smith GJD, Thompson N, Auguste AJ, Ramkissoon V, Adesiyun AA, Guan Y. Detection and phylogenetic analysis of group 1 coronaviruses in South American bats. Poster presented at Keystone meeting on “Molecular Evolution as a Driving Force in Infectious Diseases” held April 8 – 13, 2008, Breckenridge, Colorado.
  • Auguste AJ, Adams AP, Arrigo NC, Martinez R, Adesiyun AA, Tesh RB, Weaver SC, Carrington CVF. Isolation and Phylogenetic Isolation and Phylogenetic Analysis of Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis virus subtype IIIA (Mucambo virus) in Trinidad. Oral presentation at 58th ASTMH Meeting, 17 - 21 November 2009, Washington DC.
  • Auguste AJ, Weaver SC, Carrington CVF. Identification of viruses associated with acute undifferentiated febrile illnesses in Trinidad using next generation sequencing. Oral presentation at 61st ASTMH Meeting, 11 - 15 November 2012, Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Auguste AJ, Tesh RB, Weaver SC. Evolution of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in Panama. Poster presentation at Gordon Research Conferences, Tropical Infectious Diseases, held 02/10/2013 - 02/15/2013 at Hotel Galvez in Galveston TX United States.
  • Auguste AJ, Weaver SC. Phylodynamic and phylogeographic analysis of Eastern equine encephalitis virus in the New World. Oral presentation at 62nd ASTMH Meeting, 13 - 18 November 2013, Washington DV.

Albert Jonathan Auguste, Ph.D.

Albert Jonathan Auguste, Ph.D.

Post-Doctoral Fellow, Department of Pathology

University of Texas Medical Branch
4.139 Keiller Building
301 University Boulevard
Galveston, TX 77555-0609

Office: (409) 747-2440
Fax: (409) 747-2429
aj1augus@utmb.edu