• Adjunct Associate Professor, Global Health
  • Associate Professor, Pediatrics
  • Adjunct Associate Professor, Microbiology
Lakshmi Rajagopal

Seattle Children's Research Institute
1900 Ninth Ave
Seattle, WA 98101
United States

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Dr. Rajagopal is an associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Infectious Disease at the University of Washington. She has adjunct faculty appointments in the Departments of Microbiology and Global Health at the University of Washington. She is also a full faculty member of the Molecular and Cellular Biology PhD program of the University of Washington and a course coordinator of the PABIO 551 program in the Interdisciplinary Pathobiology PhD program.

Rajagopal is a member of the Center for Global Infectious Disease Research at Seattle Children's Research Institute, where her laboratory is physically located. She is an internationally recognized expert on the role of novel signaling pathways in Gram-positive pathogens.

Dr. Rajagopal's research interest is to understand virulence mechanisms of human pathogens. Her lab currently focuses on understanding how signaling systems facilitate virulence factor expression and adaptive responses in the human pathogens, Group B Streptococcus (GBS) and Staphylococcus aureus. A full listing of Dr. Rajagopal's journal publications can be found here

  • PhD (Jawaharlal Nehru University)
  • MSc (Madurai University (India))
  • BSc (Bangalore University)
Country Affiliations 
  • Tamil
Health Topics 
  • Infectious Diseases (other than STDs)
  • Maternal Child Health (incl. Reproductive Health)
  • Pathobiology
Pathobiology research areas 

Bacterial pathogenesis with a focus on Group B Streptococcus and Staphylococcus aureus infections.


Whidbey C, Harrell MI, Burnside K, Ngo L, Becraft AK, Iyer LM, Aravind L, Hitti J, Adams Waldorf KM, and Rajagopal L. A hemolytic pigment of Group B Streptococcus allows bacterial penetration of human placenta. J Exp Med 2013;210(6):1265-1281. PMCID: PMC3674703.

Patras KA, Wang NY, Fletcher EM, Cavaco CK, Jimenez A, Garg M, Fierer J, Sheen TR, Rajagopal L, and Doran KS. Group B Streptococcus CovR regulation modulates host immune signaling pathways to promote vaginal colonization. Cell Microbiol 2013;15(7):1154-1167. PMCID: PMC3657335.

Burnside K and Rajagopal L. Regulation of prokaryotic gene expression by eukaryotic-like enzymes. Curr Opin Microbiol 2012;15(2):125-131. PMCID: PMC 3320669.

Burnside K, Lembo A, Harrell MI, Klein JA, Lopez-Guisa J, Siegesmund AM, Torgerson TR, Oukka M, Molina DM, and Rajagopal L. Vaccination With a UV-Irradiated Genetically Attenuated Mutant of Staphylococcus aureus Provides Protection Against Subsequent Systemic Infection. J Infect Dis 2012;206(11):1734-1744. PMCID: PMC3488195.

Burnside K and Rajagopal L. Aspects of eukaryotic-like signaling in Gram-positive cocci: a focus on virulence. Future Microbiol 2011;6(7):747–761. PMCID: PMC3236639.

Burnside K, Lembo A, Harrell MI, Gurney M, Xue L, Binhtran NT, Connelly JE, Jewell KA, Schmidt BZ, de Los Reyes M, Tao WA, Doran KS, and Rajagopal L. Serine/threonine phosphatase Stp1 mediates post-transcriptional regulation of hemolysin, autolysis, and virulence of Group B Streptococcus. J Biol Chem 2011;286(51):44197-44210. PMCID: PMC3243546.