I am interested in determining the factors that influence the structure and function of skin microbial communities, and their role against the amphibian pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd.
This fungus has caused dramatic amphibian population declines all over the world. However, some frog species are persisting in lowland and highland tropical forests and interestingly some of these species harbor bacterial species that inhibit the growth of Bd in vitro. I am currently working on a multidisciplinary project describing the structure and function of microbial communities on the skin of tropical frogs from Panamá. We are studying three species of frogs that are persisting in the wild despite the presence of Bd. This could be key in understanding the factors that allow the survival of some species of amphibians.