Matt Koci, Ph.D


Ph.D. Viral pathogenesis, University of Georgia
M.S. Infectious diseases, University of Georgia
B.S. Biology, Virginia Tech

Research Interests

My laboratory works to understand the immune mechanisms which allow an animal to recognize, respond, eliminate, and develop resistance to pathogens. Our approach involves understanding both cellular and molecular aspects of the host response.  Currently there are three primary research projects in the laboratory.  1)  Understanding the key innate immune responses involved in pathogenesis and disease resolution of gastroenteritis.  2) Understanding how genetic polymorphisms in innate immune response genes affect susceptibility to infection.  3) Understanding how changes in the intestinal microflora affects gut physiology, mucosal immunity, and ultimately the overall health.

As part of studying these scientific questions, I am also keenly interested in getting others excited about science, careers in research, and helping students at all levels reach their full potential.  We are always interested in getting bright, young, curious, students involved in our work.  If you're interested in science, and specifically understanding the interactions between animals and microorganisms contact me to find out ways to get involved.    


Azcarate-Peril MA, Butz N, Cadenas MB, Koci M, Ballou A, Mendoza M, Ali R, Hassan H. An Attenuated Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Strain and Galacto-Oligosaccharides Accelerate Clearance of Salmonella Infections in Poultry through Modifications to the Gut Microbiome. Appl Environ Microbiol. 2018 Feb 14;84(5). pii: e02526-17. doi: 10.1128/AEM.02526-17. PubMed PMID: 29269490; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5812947

Hughes R-A, Ali RA, Mendoza M, Hassan HM, Koci MD. Prebiotic-mediated changes to the microbiome alters host mucosal gene expression: possible approach to control Salmonella in poultry. Front. Vet. Sci., 13 November 2017

Tilley J, Grimes J; Koci MD, Ali R, Stark C, Nighot P, Middlelton T, Fahrenholz A. Efficacy of Feed Additives to Reduce the Effect of Naturally Occurring Mycotoxins Fed to Turkey Hen Poults Reared to 6 Weeks of Age. Poult. Sci. 2017 Sep 20. doi: 10.3382/ps/pex214. PMID: 29053812.

Allali I, Arnold JW, Roach J, Cadenas MB, Butz N, Hassan HM, Koci M, Ballou A, Mendoza M, Ali R, Azcarate-Peril MA. A comparison of sequencing platforms and bioinformatics pipelines for compositional analysis of the gut microbiome. BMC Microbiol. 2017 Sep 13;17(1):194. doi: 10.1186/s12866-017-1101-8. PubMed PMID: 28903732; Pubmed Central PMCID: PMC5598039

Rezvani M, Mendoza M, Koci MD, Daron C, Levy J, Hassan HM. Draft Genome Sequences of Lactobacillus animalis Strain P38 and Lactobacillus reuteri Strain P43 Isolated from Chicken Cecum. Genome Announc. 2016 Nov 3;4(6). pii: e01229-16. doi: 10.1128/genomeA.01229-16. PubMed PMID: 27811108; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5095478.

Rezvani M, Mendoza M, Koci MD, Daron C, Levy J, Hassan HM. Draft Genome Sequence of Lactobacillus crispatus C25 Isolated from Chicken Cecum. Genome Announc. 2016 Nov 3;4(6). pii: e01223-16. doi: 10.1128/genomeA.01223-16. PubMed PMID: 27811103; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5095473.

Meliopoulos VA, Marvin SA, Freiden P, Moser LA, Nighot P, Ali R, Blikslager A, Reddivari M, Heath RJ, Koci MD, Schultz-Cherry S. Oral Administration of Astrovirus Capsid Protein Is Sufficient To Induce Acute Diarrhea In Vivo. MBio. 2016 Nov 1;7(6). pii: e01494-16. doi: 10.1128/mBio.01494-16. PubMed PMID: 27803180; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5090040.

Ballou AL, Ali RA, Mendoza MA, Ellis JC, Hassan HM, Croom WJ, Koci MD.  Development of the chick microbiome: How early exposure influences future microbial diversity. Front Vet Sci. 2016 Jan 20;3:2. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2016.00002. eCollection 2016. PubMed PMID: 26835461.

Troxell B, Petri N, Daron C, Pereira R, Mendoza M, Hassan HM, Koci MD. Poultry body temperature contributes to invasion control through reduced expression of Salmonella pathogenicity island 1 genes in Salmonella enterica serovars Typhimurium and Enteritidis.  Appl Environ Microbiol. 2015 Dec;81(23):8192-201. doi: 10.1128/AEM.02622-15. Epub 2015 Sep 18. PubMed PMID: 26386070.

Fulton JE, Arango J, Ali RA, Bohorquez EB, Lund AR, Ashwell CM, Settar P, O'Sullivan NP, Koci MD.  Genetic variation within the Mx gene of commercially selected chicken lines reveals multiple haplotypes, recombination and a protein under selection pressure.  PLoS One. 2014 Sep 22;9(9):e108054. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0108054. eCollection 2014. PubMed PMID: 25244433.

Sample CJ, Hudak KE, Barefoot BE, Koci MD, Wanyonyi MS, Abraham S, Staats HF, Ramsburg EA.  A mastoparan-derived peptide has broad-spectrum antiviral activity against enveloped viruses. Peptides. 2013 Oct;48:96-105. doi: 10.1016/j.peptides.2013.07.014. Epub 2013 Jul 26. PubMed PMID: 23891650.

Oviedo-Rondon EO, Leandro NM, Ali R, Koci M, Moraes V, Brake J.  Broiler breeder feeding programs and trace minerals on maternal antibody transfer and broiler humoral immune response. J Applied Poult Res. 2013 22 (3), 499-510

Qiu R, Croom J, Ali RA, Ballou AL, Smith CD, Ashwell CM, Hassan HM, Chiang CC, Koci MD. Direct fed microbial supplementation repartitions host energy to the immune system.  J Anim Sci. 2012 Aug;90(8):2639-51. doi: 10.2527/jas.2011-4611. Epub 2012 Feb 24. PubMed PMID: 22367073.

Meyerhoff RR, Ali RA, Liu K, Huang GQ, Koci MD. Comprehensive analysis of commercially available mouse antichicken monoclonal antibodies for cross-reactivity with peripheral blood leukocytes from commercial turkeys.  Poult Sci. 2012 Feb;91(2):383-92. doi: 10.3382/ps.2011-01846. Erratum in: Poult Sci. 2012 Apr;91(4):1043. PubMed PMID: 22252352.

Meyerhoff RR, Nighot PK, Ali RA, Blikslager AT, Koci MD. Characterization of turkey inducible nitric oxide synthase and identification of its expression in the intestinal epithelium following astrovirus infection. Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis. 2012 Jan;35(1):63-9. doi: 10.1016/j.cimid.2011.10.001. Epub 2011 Nov 25. PubMed PMID: 22118854.

Leandro NM, Ali R, Koci M, Moraes V, Eusebio-Balcazar PE, Jornigan J, Malheiros RD, Wineland MJ, Brake J, Oviedo-Rondón EO.  Maternal antibody transfer to broiler progeny varies among strains and is affected by grain source and cage density. Poult Sci. 2011 Dec;90(12):2730-9. doi: 10.3382/ps.2011-01573. PubMed PMID: 22080011.

Leandro NM, Ali R, Koci M, Moraes V, Malheiros R, Wineland MJ, Oviedo-Rondón EO.  Effects of broiler breeder genetic, diet type, and feeding program on maternal antibody transfer and development of lymphoid tissues in chicken progeny. J Applied Poult Res. 2011 20 (4), 474-484.

Nighot PK, Moeser A, Ali RA, Blikslager AT, Koci MD.  Astrovirus infection induces sodium malabsorption and redistributes sodium hydrogen exchanger expression. Virology. 2010 Jun 5;401(2):146-54. doi: 10.1016/j.virol.2010.02.004. Epub 2010 Mar 12. PubMed PMID: 20219227.

Grimes JL, Koci MD, Stark CR, Smith DP, Nighot PK, Middleton T. Biological Effect of Naturally Occurring Mycotoxins Fed to Poults Reared to 21 Days of Age.  Int. J. Poult. Sci. 2010 9: 871-874.

Croom J, Chichlowski M, Froetschel M, McBride BW, Qui R, Koci MD. The effects of direct-fed microbial, primalac, or salinomycin® supplementation on intestinal lactate isomers and cecal volatile fatty acid concentrations in broilers.  Int. J. Poult. Sci. 2009 8 (2), 128-132.

Oviedo-Rondón EO, Small J, Wineland MJ, Christensen VL, Mozdziak PS, Koci MD, Funderburk SV, Ort DT, Mann KM.  Broiler embryo bone development is influenced by incubator temperature, oxygen concentration and eggshell conductance at the plateau stage in oxygen consumption. Br Poult Sci. 2008 Nov;49(6):666-76. doi: 10.1080/00071660802433149. PubMed PMID: 19093239.

Strain E, Kelley LA, Schultz-Cherry S, Muse SV, Koci MD.  Genomic analysis of closely related astroviruses.  J Virol. 2008 May;82(10):5099-103. doi: 10.1128/JVI.01993-07. Epub 2008 Mar 5. PubMed PMID: 18321976.

Chichlowski M, Croom J, Qui R, McBride BW, Koci MD.  Direct fed microbial, primalac, supplementation and jejunal glucose and proline transport in broiler chickens. Int. J. Poult. Sci. 2008 7 (12), 1163-1166.

Chichlowski M, Croom J, McBride BW, Daniel L, Davis G, Koci MD.  Direct-fed microbial PrimaLac and salinomycin modulate whole-body and intestinal oxygen consumption and intestinal mucosal cytokine production in the broiler chick.  Poult Sci. 2007 Jun;86(6):1100-6. PubMed PMID: 17495079.

Chichlowski M, Croom WJ, Edens FW, McBride BW, Qiu R, Chiang CC, Daniel LR, Havenstein GB, Koci MD.  Microarchitecture and spatial relationship between bacteria and ileal, cecal, and colonic epithelium in chicks fed a direct-fed microbial, PrimaLac, and salinomycin.  Poult Sci. 2007 Jun;86(6):1121-32. PubMed PMID: 17495082.

Fan YK, Croom WJ, Daniel L, McBride BW, Koci M, Havenstein GB, Eisen EJ. Effect of genotype on whole-body and intestinal metabolic response to monensin in mice.  Asian Australas. J. Anim. Sci. 2006 19 (4), 554-562.

Sellers HS, Koci MD, Linnemann E, Kelley LA, Schultz-Cherry S.  Development of a multiplex reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction diagnostic test specific for turkey astrovirus and coronavirus.  Avian Dis. 2004 Sep;48(3):531-9. PubMed PMID: 15529975.

Koci MD, Kelley LA, Larsen D, Schultz-Cherry S.  Astrovirus-induced synthesis of nitric oxide contributes to virus control during infection.  J Virol. 2004 Feb;78(3):1564-74. PubMed PMID: 14722310.

Koci MD, Moser LA, Kelley LA, Larsen D, Brown CC, Schultz-Cherry S.  Astrovirus induces diarrhea in the absence of inflammation and cell death.  J Virol. 2003 Nov;77(21):11798-808. PubMed PMID: 14557664.

Schultz-Cherry S, Koci M, Thompson E, Tumpey TM.  Examining the cellular pathways involved in influenza virus induced apoptosis.  Avian Dis. 2003;47(3 Suppl):968-71. PubMed PMID: 14575095.

Behling-Kelly E, Schultz-Cherry S, Koci M, Kelley L, Larsen D, Brown C. Localization of astrovirus in experimentally infected turkeys as determined by in situ hybridization. Vet Pathol. 2002 Sep;39(5):595-8. PubMed PMID: 12243474.

Schultz-Cherry S, King DJ, Koci MD.  Inactivation of an astrovirus associated with poult enteritis mortality syndrome.  Avian Dis. 2001 Jan-Mar;45(1):76-82. PubMed PMID: 11332502.

Koci MD, Seal BS, Schultz-Cherry S.  Development of an RT-PCR diagnostic test for an avian astrovirus.  J Virol Methods. 2000 Oct;90(1):79-83. PubMed PMID: 11011083.

Koci MD, Seal BS, Schultz-Cherry S.  Molecular characterization of an avian astrovirus.  J Virol. 2000 Jul;74(13):6173-7. PubMed PMID: 10846102.

Schultz-Cherry S, Kapczynski DR, Simmons VM, Koci MD, Brown C, Barnes HJ.  Identifying agent(s) associated with poult enteritis mortality syndrome: importance of the thymus.  Avian Dis. 2000 Apr-Jun;44(2):256-65. PubMed PMID: 10879904.

Mullins DW, Koci MD, Burger CJ, Elgert KD.  Interleukin-12 overcomes paclitaxel-mediated suppression of T-cell proliferation.  Immunopharmacol Immunotoxicol. 1998 Nov;20(4):473-92. PubMed PMID: 9805229.


Summer Biotech Boot camp program gives students from Bertie county the opportunity to experience authentic biotech skills.

NC Ag Biotech Professional Forum: Animal Microbiome: Small Scale Science, Large Scale Benefits
March 23, 2016

2014 NC State University Stewards of the Future: Future or Foods: Innovation in Action
November 18-19, 2014