Richard Frothingham, MD

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Associate Professor of Medicine
Assistant Professor in Molecular Genetics and Microbiology
Department / Division:
Medicine / Medicine - DHVI Faculty
Address:
DUMC 103020
Durham, NC 27710
Appointment Telephone:
919-620-5300
Office Telephone:
919-684-3349
Fax:
919-681-1678
Training:
  • MD, Duke University School of Medicine, 1981
Residency:
  • Internal Medicine-Pediatrics, University of Rochester Medical Center (New York), 1982-1986
Fellowship:
  • Infectious Diseases, Duke University Medical Center, 1990-1993
Clinical Interests:
HIV infection
Research Interests:

Dr. Frothingham is the principal investigator of a research laboratory which studies Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the cause of tuberculosis, and Mycobacterium avium, a closely related bacterium causing serious infections in AIDS patients. We are pursuing two current projects.

The first project aims to develop vaccines against M. avium and M. tuberculosis. We inject mice with candidate plasmid DNA vaccines which produce bacterial proteins in mouse muscle. We use a variety of DNA adjuvants to modify the immune response. We hope to use DNA vaccination to protect against new infections and to modify the course of existing infections. We also hope to identify correlates of vaccine-induced protective immunity.

The second project uses variations in bacterial DNA sequences to identify species and strains. Dr. Frothingham was part of a team of four Duke scientists who used DNA sequence analysis to identify the cause of Whipple's disease. He also identified used DNA sequence to identify a particular group of M. avium strains which cause disseminated infections in AIDS patients. We recently developed a new tuberculosis typing method using variable numbers of tandem DNA repeats. We are applying this new typing method in national and international collaborations.

Dr. Frothingham does not currently conduct clinical trials.

Special areas of expertise include tuberculosis, mycobacteria, strain differentiation, DNA vaccination, and pyrazinamide.

Key words: tuberculosis, mycobacteria, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Mycobacterium avium, DNA vaccines, tandem repeat DNA, pyrazinamide, mouse