Melanie A. Wellington, M.D., Ph.D.

Melanie A. Wellington, M.D., Ph.D.

Contact Information

University of Rochester Medical Center
School of Medicine and Dentistry
601 Elmwood Ave, Box 690
Rochester, NY 14642

Office: (585) 275-5944
Fax: (585) 273-1104
Lab: (585) 273-5459
Administrative: (585) 275-5944

Professional Bio

Dr. Wellington received her undergraduate degree in Biology at Brown University. She then went to Duke University, where she earned a Masters of Science in Cell Biology and her MD. She then came to Rochester where she completed a residency in Pediatrics. After her residency, Dr. Wellington worked for a year in Gallup, NM, as an attending pediatrician with the Indian Health Service and the Navajo Nation. She then returned to Rochester, where she combined her fellowship training in Pediatric Infectious Diseases with graduate studies, leading to her earning a PhD in Microbiology and Immunology. Her current research efforts grew out of her graduate work, and she is now serving as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases in the Department of Pediatrics.

Research Bio

Dr. Wellington's research interests are:
1) Host defense against infection with Candida
2) Fungal infections in children
3) Infections in the immunocompromised host.

Candida is the most common cause of invasive fungal infection. Most individuals are colonized with Candida, but healthy individuals rarely develop disease from the organism. Candida does cause serious disease in patients who are immunocompromised because of malignancies, AIDS, congenital immunodeficiency disorders, or who are receiving medications that inhibit the immune response. Candida disease is extremely difficult to treat and has a high rate of mortality. Therefore, new modalities, such as the use of anti-Candida antibodies are being investigated. However, very little is known about how antibodies function to protect individuals from infection.

The focus of Dr. Wellington's laboratory is to investigate how the immune response to Candida is affected by the presence of anti-Candida antibodies. The major area of investigation is the interaction of phagocytes with Candida. These investigations include characterization of the mechanisms through which antibody enhances the phagocyte response to the organism. In addition to antibody, receptors on the phagocyte surface that recognize pathogen associated molecular patterns may play an important role in activating the anti-Candida response. The ability of phagocytes to respond appropriately to Candida is important for activation of innate and adaptive immune responses to Candida and may lead to protection from the development of Candida disease. We expect these studies to lead to a better understanding of host-fungal interactions, which will allow us to improve the care of patients at risk for Candida disease.

Awards & Honors (Local)

Junior Faculty/Post-doctoral Fellow Travel Award | American Society for Microbiology Conference 2008
Morning Report MVP Award | Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong 2007 - 2008
Morning Report MVP Award | Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong 2006 - 2007
Strong Children's Research Center Research Development Award | Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong 2006 - 2007
Young Investigator Award, FEBS Advanced Lecture Course | La Colle sur Loup, France 2005 - 2005

Recent Journal Articles

Showing the 5 most recent journal articles. 22 available »

2016 Dec
Koselny K, Green J, DiDone L, Halterman JP, Fothergill AW, Wiederhold NP, Patterson TF, Cushion MT, Rappelye C, Wellington M, Krysan DJ. "The Celecoxib Derivative AR-12 Has Broad-Spectrum Antifungal Activity In Vitro and Improves the Activity of Fluconazole in a Murine Model of Cryptococcosis." Antimicrobial agents and chemotherapy. 2016 Dec; 60(12):7115-7127. Epub 2016 Nov 21.
2014 Jun
Krysan DJ, Sutterwala FS, Wellington M. "Catching fire: Candida albicans, macrophages, and pyroptosis." PLoS pathogens. 2014 Jun; 10(6):e1004139. Epub 2014 Jun 26.
2014 Mar
Harrison BD, Hashemi J, Bibi M, Pulver R, Bavli D, Nahmias Y, Wellington M, Sapiro G, Berman J. "A tetraploid intermediate precedes aneuploid formation in yeasts exposed to fluconazole." PLoS biology. 2014 Mar; 12(3):e1001815. Epub 2014 Mar 18.
2014 Feb 11
Butts A, Koselny K, Chabrier-Roselló Y, Semighini CP, Brown JC, Wang X, Annadurai S, Didone L, Tabroff J, Childers WE, Abou-Gharbia M, Wellington M, Cardenas ME, Madhani HD, Heitman J, Krysan DJ. "Estrogen receptor antagonists are anti-cryptococcal agents that directly bind EF hand proteins and synergize with fluconazole in vivo." mBio. 2014 Feb 11; 5(1):e00765-13. Epub 2014 Feb 11.
2014 Feb
Wellington M, Koselny K, Sutterwala FS, Krysan DJ. "Candida albicans triggers NLRP3-mediated pyroptosis in macrophages." Eukaryotic cell. 2014 Feb; 13(2):329-40. Epub 2013 Dec 27.

Current Appointments

Associate Professor - Department of Pediatrics, Infectious Diseases (SMD) - Primary


Pediatric Infectious Diseases - American Board of Pediatrics
Pediatrics - American Board of Pediatrics


PhD | Microbiology and Immunology | University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry2005
MD | Medicine | Duke University School of Medicine1995
MS | Biology | Duke University1994
ScB | Biology | Brown University1990

Post-Doctoral Training & Residency

Fellowship in Pediatric Infectious Disease at University of Rochester Medical Center08/01/1999 - 06/30/2003
Residency in Pediatrics at University of Rochester Medical Center07/01/1996 - 06/30/1998
Internship in Pediatrics at University of Rochester Medical Center07/01/1995 - 06/30/1996