Dr. Reese received a B.S. degree in Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry from Yale University in 1998. While at Yale, he worked in the laboratory of Dr. Axel Brunger on structural studies of mammalian vesicular transport proteins (SNAPs and SNAREs). After Yale, Dr. Reese spent two years teaching high school science to gifted students with learning disabilities.

Dr. Reese received a Ph.D. in Biophysics in 2006 from the University of California, San Francisco, where he worked jointly in the laboratories of Dr. Frances Brodsky and Dr. Volker Doetsch on the structural basis for the activities of proteins involved in protein trafficking and neuronal signaling. During his postdoctoral work with John Boothroyd at Stanford University, Dr. Reese made the surprising discovery that a family of catalytically inactive kinases, or pseudokinases, are essential to Toxoplasma's ability to cause disease in mice.  Dr. Reese went on to demonstrate that these pseudokinases are allosteric inhibitors of the immune-related GTPases, which are critical for the control of a variety of intracellular pathogens.

In the fall of 2013, Dr. Reese joined the faculty in the Department of Pharmacology at UT Southwestern. His lab is focused on determining the many mechanisms by which the ubiquitous intracellular parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, co-opts the signaling networks of its host organisms. His laboratory combines techniques from multiple disciplines: from classical and molecular genetics and cell biology to biophysics and structural biology. This allows the examination of problems at many levels, from the atomic order structures of protein-protein complexes to the analysis of the signatures of evolutionary competition written in the genomes of the parasite and its hosts.


Yale University (1998), Molecular Biophysics
Graduate School
University of California-San F (2006), Biophysics

Research Interest

  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Cell signaling, kinases, pseudokinases
  • Host-pathogen interaction; co-evolution
  • Immunology
  • Structural biology


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Third-generation sequencing revises the molecular karyotype for Toxoplasma gondii and identifies emerging copy number variants in sexual recombinants.
Xia J, Venkat A, Bainbridge RE, Reese ML, Le Roch KG, Ay F, Boyle JP, Genome Res 2021 May 31 5 834-851
A single-cell RNA-seq atlas of Schistosoma mansoni identifies a key regulator of blood feeding.
Wendt G, Zhao L, Chen R, Liu C, O'Donoghue AJ, Caffrey CR, Reese ML, Collins JJ, Science 2020 09 369 6511 1644-1649
Naive CD8 T cell IFN? responses to a vacuolar antigen are regulated by an inflammasome-independent NLRP3 pathway and Toxoplasma gondii ROP5.
Kongsomboonvech AK, Rodriguez F, Diep AL, Justice BM, Castallanos BE, Camejo A, Mukhopadhyay D, Taylor GA, Yamamoto M, Saeij JPJ, Reese ML, Jensen KDC, PLoS Pathog 2020 08 16 8 e1008327
Thinking outside of the cell: Secreted protein kinases in bacteria, parasites, and mammals.
Park BC, Reese M, Tagliabracci VS, IUBMB Life 2019 Jun 71 6 749-759


Featured Books Legend Featured Books

Honors & Awards

  • NSF CAREER Award
  • UT Southwestern President's Research Council Distinguished Researcher Award
  • NIAID K22 Research Scholar Development Award
    Career transition grant (2011-2016)
  • American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Research Fellowship
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow