About Us

The Sharpton Lab was founded in October 2013 when Thomas J. Sharpton joined Oregon State University as an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Microbiology and Statistics.

Our laboratory strives to resolve the molecular functions used by the gut microbiome to influence health with the long-term aim of applying this knowledge to develop disease diagnostics and therapeutics. To this end, we employ systems biology approaches that measure the complex milieu of microbiome features (e.g., taxa, genes) and statistically model these data to zero-in on those features linked to health as well as the exogeneous factors (e.g., dietary nutrients, environmental toxicants, infectious agents) that influence them. We also seek to use this knowledge to advance our understanding of vertebrate evolution and ecology. Our work often involves the innovation of new methodology and research tools.

We value interdisciplinary collaborations, commercial partnerships, and open science practices. As part of our effort to empower microbiome research, we develop open-source software and offer training workshops in microbiome data analytics. Moreover, we manage a microbiome data science fee-for-service facility that generates microbiome profiles from biological samples.

Our work is generously supported by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the United States Drug Administration, the Morris Animal Foundation, and the Oregon Agricultural Research Foundation.

If our research program sounds like an organization you want to be a part of or would like to collaborate with, we encourage you to contact Dr. Sharpton directly.