Kari Debbink

< Natural Sciences


  • National Institutes of Health, Postdoctoral Fellow, Virology (2016-2017)
  • University of Michigan, Postdoctoral Fellow, Virology (2014-2016)
  • University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Doctor of Philosophy, Microbiology and Immunology (2009-2014)
  • Endicott College, Master of Education, Education (2002-2004)
  • New College of Florida, Bachelor of Arts, Biology (1996-2000)

Areas of Expertise

Virology, Microbiology, Immunology, Vaccines, Viral Evolution


Dr. Kari Debbink completed her undergraduate studies at New College of Florida in Sarasota, FL where she studied biology. She then taught middle school science for 9 years, during which time she earned her M.Ed. In 2009, she went back to school to earn her PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from UNC-Chapel Hill. During her doctoral work under the mentorship of Ralph Baric, she studied primarily norovirus, but also published on coronaviruses and dengue virus. In 2014, she began a postdoctoral fellowship on viral evolution in Adam Lauring’s lab at University of Michigan and later did a second postdoctoral fellowship with Ted Pierson at the National Institutes of Health studying flaviviruses including Zika and West Nile Virus. Dr. Debbink is an author on over 25 peer-reviewed publications and has 1 US Patent. At Bowie, Dr. Debbink’s research program includes a collaborative project with UMD focused on developing a therapeutic vector to combat citrus greening disease, as well as structural modeling projects exploring the relationship between the structure and function of viral proteins. Since arriving at Bowie in 2017, Dr. Debbink has mentored over 10 undergraduate students in her lab.

Research Interests

  • Structural homology modeling to predict structure-function relationships of viral proteins
  • Plant virology
  • Antibiotic resistance (CURE project)

Debbink Research Lab

Service Interests

  • ASV Communications Committee (Organizing National “Chat with a Virologist” Initiative)
  • ASM
  • Editorial Board for Virology Journal

Awards & Honors          

  • CAS Outstanding Young Faculty (2019)


  • American Society of Virology (ASV)
  • American Society for Microbiology (ASM)
  • Council for Undergraduate Research (CUR)


U.S. Application No. 61/887,101.

“Methods and Compositions For Norovirus Blockade Epitopes.”

Ralph Baric, Lisa Lindesmith, Kari Debbink, Eric Donaldson, Jesica Swanstrom.

Other Resources