Beth Ann Lazazzera

Associate Professor, MIMG, University of California Los Angeles

Beth Lazazzera received her Ph.D. in Bacteriology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and was a postdoctoral fellow at MIT. She arrived at UCLA in 1999 and joined the Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics (MIMG). She has participated in numerous instructional activities at UCLA and has taught the course “Introduction to Microbiology”, MIMG101, from 2001-2018. Since 2019, she has taught the introductory biology course, LS7A, “Cell and Molecular Biology”. She has been participating in workshops offered by the Center for Education Innovation and Learning in the Sciences (CEILS) since its inception and was a Scientific Teaching Fellow at the Mobile Summer Institute at UCLA. Beyond her teaching at UCLA, she concurrently spent 5 years as one of the lead instructors for the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Advanced Bacterial Genetics Course. Dr. Lazazzera is a past Vice Chair of Undergraduate Education in MIMG, past-Chair of the Academic Senate Undergraduate Council, and is current the Chair of the Life Science Education Department. Dr. Lazazzera’s laboratory studies bacterial social behavior and evolution. They have identified mechanisms by which Gram-positive bacteria are able to communication using peptide signals and mechanisms by which these bacteria can form biofilms. They are currently collaborating to determine a mechanism to disrupt biofilms that form on orthopedic devices. They are also studying how disruption of translational quality control pathways can disrupt the social behavior of bacteria. This led to the finding that problems in translation will lead to a higher mutation rate, which contributes to increased frequency of antibiotic resistance development. Future work is aimed at understanding the molecular mechanisms that underlie these bacterial behaviors.

Education and Training

Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyPost-Doc1999Microbiology
University of WisconsinPh.D.1995Bacteriology
University of MassachusettsB.S.1989Microbiology

Awards and Honors

  • Alternate for Scholar Award, Damon Runyon-Walter Winchell Foundation, 2000.
  • Herman Smythe Award, University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1994.
  • Predoctoral Fellowship, National Institutes of Health, 1990-1993.
  • Postdoctoral Fellowship, Damon Runyon-Walter Winchell Foundation, 1996-1999.


  1. Juncker RB, Lazazzera BA, Billi F. Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields Disrupt Staphylococcus epidermidis Biofilms and Enhance the Antibiofilm Efficacy of Antibiotics.. Microbiology spectrum, 2022.
  2. Juncker RB, Lazazzera BA, Billi F. The use of functionalized nanoparticles to treat Staphylococcus aureus-based surgical-site infections: a systematic review.. Journal of applied microbiology, 2021.
  3. Howitz N, Su T, Lazazzera BA. Meta-Tyrosine Induces Cytotoxic Misregulation of Metabolism in Escherichia coli.. Journal of molecular biology, 2020.
  4. Ghalayani Esfahani A, Lazazzera B, Draghi L, Farè S, Chiesa R, De Nardo L, Billi F. Bactericidal activity of gallium-doped chitosan coatings against staphylococcal infection.. Journal of applied microbiology, 2018.
  5. Anderson TD, Robson SA, Jiang XW, Malmirchegini GR, Fierobe HP, Lazazzera BA, Clubb RT. Retraction for Anderson et al., "Assembly of Minicellulosomes on the Surface of Bacillus subtilis".. Applied and environmental microbiology, 2018.
  6. Kermgard E, Yang Z, Michel AM, Simari R, Wong J, Ibba M, Lazazzera BA. Quality Control by Isoleucyl-tRNA Synthetase of Bacillus subtilis Is Required for Efficient Sporulation.. Scientific reports, 2017.
  7. Lazazzera BA, Hughes D. Genetics: Location affects sporulation.. Nature, 2015.
  8. Hoover SE, Perez AJ, Tsui HC, Sinha D, Smiley DL, DiMarchi RD, Winkler ME, Lazazzera BA. A new quorum-sensing system (TprA/PhrA) for Streptococcus pneumoniae D39 that regulates a lantibiotic biosynthesis gene cluster.. Molecular microbiology, 2015.
  9. Bullwinkle T, Lazazzera B, Ibba M. Quality control and infiltration of translation by amino acids outside of the genetic code.. Annual review of genetics, 2014.
  10. Bullwinkle TJ, Reynolds NM, Raina M, Moghal A, Matsa E, Rajkovic A, Kayadibi H, Fazlollahi F, Ryan C, Howitz N, Faull KF, Lazazzera BA, Ibba M. Oxidation of cellular amino acid pools leads to cytotoxic mistranslation of the genetic code.. eLife, 2014.
  11. Terra R, Stanley-Wall NR, Cao G, Lazazzera BA. Identification of Bacillus subtilis SipW as a bifunctional signal peptidase that controls surface-adhered biofilm formation.. Journal of bacteriology, 2012.
  12. Anderson TD, Robson SA, Jiang XW, Malmirchegini GR, Fierobe HP, Lazazzera BA, Clubb RT. Assembly of minicellulosomes on the surface of Bacillus subtilis.. Applied and environmental microbiology, 2011.
  13. Reynolds NM, Lazazzera BA, Ibba M. Cellular mechanisms that control mistranslation.. Nature reviews. Microbiology, 2010.
  14. Lazazzera BA. The phosphoenolpyruvate phosphotransferase system: as important for biofilm formation by Vibrio cholerae as it is for metabolism in Escherichia coli.. Journal of bacteriology, 2010.
  15. Lanigan-Gerdes S, Briceno G, Dooley AN, Faull KF, Lazazzera BA. Identification of residues important for cleavage of the extracellular signaling peptide CSF of Bacillus subtilis from its precursor protein.. Journal of bacteriology, 2008.
  16. Pottathil M, Jung A, Lazazzera BA. CSF, a species-specific extracellular signaling peptide for communication among strains of Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus mojavensis.. Journal of bacteriology, 2008.
  17. Lanigan-Gerdes S, Dooley AN, Faull KF, Lazazzera BA. Identification of subtilisin, Epr and Vpr as enzymes that produce CSF, an extracellular signalling peptide of Bacillus subtilis.. Molecular microbiology, 2007.
  18. Stanley NR, Lazazzera BA. Defining the genetic differences between wild and domestic strains of Bacillus subtilis that affect poly-gamma-dl-glutamic acid production and biofilm formation.. Molecular microbiology, 2005.
  19. Lazazzera BA. Lessons from DNA microarray analysis: the gene expression profile of biofilms.. Current opinion in microbiology, 2005.
  20. Stanley NR, Lazazzera BA. Environmental signals and regulatory pathways that influence biofilm formation.. Molecular microbiology, 2004.
  21. Hamon MA, Stanley NR, Britton RA, Grossman AD, Lazazzera BA. Identification of AbrB-regulated genes involved in biofilm formation by Bacillus subtilis.. Molecular microbiology, 2004.
  22. Stanley NR, Britton RA, Grossman AD, Lazazzera BA. Identification of catabolite repression as a physiological regulator of biofilm formation by Bacillus subtilis by use of DNA microarrays.. Journal of bacteriology, 2003.
  23. Pottathil M, Lazazzera BA. The extracellular Phr peptide-Rap phosphatase signaling circuit of Bacillus subtilis.. Frontiers in bioscience : a journal and virtual library, 2003.
  24. Hamon MA, Lazazzera BA. The sporulation transcription factor Spo0A is required for biofilm development in Bacillus subtilis.. Molecular microbiology, 2001.
  25. Lazazzera BA. The intracellular function of extracellular signaling peptides.. Peptides, 2001.
  26. Lazazzera BA. Quorum sensing and starvation: signals for entry into stationary phase.. Current opinion in microbiology, 2000.
  27. Lazazzera BA, Kurtser IG, McQuade RS, Grossman AD. An autoregulatory circuit affecting peptide signaling in Bacillus subtilis.. Journal of bacteriology, 1999.
  28. Lazazzera BA, Grossman AD. The ins and outs of peptide signaling.. Trends in microbiology, 1998.
  29. Lazazzera BA, Solomon JM, Grossman AD. An exported peptide functions intracellularly to contribute to cell density signaling in B. subtilis.. Cell, 1997.
  30. Lazazzera BA, Grossman AD. A regulatory switch involving a Clp ATPase.. BioEssays : news and reviews in molecular, cellular and developmental biology, 1997.
  31. Solomon JM, Lazazzera BA, Grossman AD. Purification and characterization of an extracellular peptide factor that affects two different developmental pathways in Bacillus subtilis.. Genes & development, 1996.
  32. Bates DM, Lazazzera BA, Kiley PJ. Characterization of FNR* mutant proteins indicates two distinct mechanisms for altering oxygen regulation of the Escherichia coli transcription factor FNR.. Journal of bacteriology, 1995.
  33. Lazazzera BA, Bates DM, Kiley PJ. The activity of the Escherichia coli transcription factor FNR is regulated by a change in oligomeric state.. Genes & development, 1993.