Thomas Shelite, MS, PhD

Sr. Biosafety Specialist | (409) 772-8492

Dr. Thomas Shelite is a senior Biosafety Specialist for the UTMB International Biosafety Training Center at Galveston, TX; his primary training courses include BSL2 and BSL3. Thomas is the lead trainer for the theoretical ABSL2/BSL2 courses as well as the full BSL2 and BSL3 courses for UTMB. 

Thomas has 15+ years of BSL2, BSL3 and ABSL3 research experience. His previous work encompasses the development of rapid point-of-care diagnostics for emerging and neglected tropical pathogens as well as the study of rickettsial pathogenesis and host immunity to them. This research has led to 28 publications in journals such as PNAS, Cell, and PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases. 

Thomas received his Bachelor and Master of Biological Sciences degrees from Wichita State University, where he studied the WNV antibody prevalence of wintering bird populations in central Kansas. He earned his PhD from the University of Texas Medical Branch, where he established a hematogenously disseminated murine model of scrub typhus that closely parallels the pathology of human disease. This model provides a powerful new tool to study the host’s immune response to an important neglected tropical disease.