Blake Wiedenheft is affiliated with Montana State University.
He achieved his Bachelor of Science degree in microbiology from Montana State University in 1998 and upon graduating, worked as a fisheries biologist in Alaska.He currently runs a National Institutes of Health -funded research program focused on understanding the mechanisms bacteria employ to defend themselves from infection and the counter defense strategies that viruses use to subvert these defense systems.He spent his PhD sampling hot springs in Yellowstone National Park, then created artificial versions in the laboratory to study the microorganisms that lived in the inhospitable water.Carter contributed to Wiedenheft's CRISPR research and was part of the discovery of the first crystal structure of the CRISPR-associated complex for antiviral defense.Originally from Fort Peck, he has established himself as a leading researcher in the study of CRISPRs, which have been transforming biomedical sciences by providing new tools for programmable manipulation of DNA.He has been published extensively in nearly 50 leading scientific journals, including Science, Nature and PNAS, and his high-impact work has been cited more than 3,700 times.
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Department of Microbiology and Immunology
A team lead by MSU scientist Blake Wiedenheft was able to detect the novel coronavirus in samples taken at Bozeman's Water Reclamation Facility, which handles millions of gallons of wastewater produced each day by the city's roughly 50,000 residents. At the end of April, Gallatin County - including Bozeman - had reported a total of 146 COVID-19 cases, suggesting that the MSU team's tests detected virus molecules from a relatively small number of infected individuals.