David J. Barton, Ph.D., earned his doctoral degree from the University of Toledo (formerly the Medical College of Ohio) in 1989. He completed 7 years of postdoctoral research training at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida.
Dr. Barton joined the faculty of the University of Colorado School of Medicine Department of Microbiology in 1997.
The Barton lab studies RNA viruses - viral RNA replication - and host-pathogen interactions involving viral RNA and endoribonucleases.
Poliovirus. Social, political, economic and scientific factors have - so far - prevented the planned eradication of poliovirus. The Barton lab pursues hypothesis-driven research to discover how poliovirus replicates in cells and evades antiviral host responses.
In collaboration with Olve Peersen at CSU, we seek to understand how structural features in the viral polymerase influence viral RNA recombination & error catastrophe. Circulating vaccine-derived polioviruses arise, in part, due to viral RNA recombination. A better understanding of viral RNA recombination may lead to improved vaccines - helping mankind achieve and maintain poliovirus eradication.
In collaboration with the Hesselberth and Kieft labs in the CU SOM - we seek to understand how endoribonucleases influence health and disease. An RNA element within poliovirus inhibits ribonuclease L - protecting the virus from this antiviral endoribonuclease. Deep sequencing methods developed in our labs reveal the frequency and location of endoribonuclease cleavage sites within host and viral RNAs - providing insights into the manner in which endoribonucleases influence health and disease.
Hepatitis C virus, influenza A virus and other RNA viruses. Through collaborations around the world, we use cyclic phosphate cDNA synthesis and deep sequencing methods to examine endoribonucleases and their impact during viral infections.
Dr. Barton has received many awards and honors throughout his career, including being an American Cancer Society Research Scholar from 2006-2008. He received two Excellence in Teaching Awards from the School of Medicine in 2000-2001 and 2003-2004. Dr. Barton has served on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Virology and provided journal reviews for numerous scientific publications. He has served as a grant reviewer for NIH, ACS, and other funding organizations.