Noteworthy: MMBio Directed by New Chair

Dr. Laura C. Bridgewater

Dr. Laura C. Bridgewater was appointed chair of the Microbiology and Molecular Biology Department, effective August 1, 2011. Dr. Bridgewater is a graduate of Brigham Young University where she earned her bachelor’s degree in microbiology. She received her genetics doctorate from George Washington University, and afterward worked at the world-renowned M. D. Anderson Cancer Center as a postdoctoral fellow. Bridgewater returned to BYU in 1999. Her research studies the effects of a novel morphogenetic protein on muscle and neurological functions. Dr. Bridgewater discovered specific mechanisms that control cartilage osteoarthritis genes, as well as a new class of bone morphogenetic protein that is localized in the nucleus of a cell. Professor Bridgewater has been widely published, with papers in prominent academic journals such as the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Nucleic Acids Research, Molecular Carcinogenesis, and Osteoarthritis and Cartilage. Undergraduate and graduate students in Bridgewater’s molecular biology research lab gain invaluable research experience, and perhaps more importantly, have opportunities to present and publish their research. Virtually all of Professor Bridgewater’s publications acknowledge students as coauthor or lead author. Dr. Bridgewater says she enjoys being in her new position and working with the outstanding faculty members in the department. She adds, “I am grateful for the support of my husband, Tim, and our four children.”