Dr. Mark Keen

Mark G. Keen

Teaching Assistant Professor of Microbiology

Undergraduate Teaching

1567C Thomas Hall

Campus Box 7615
North Carolina State University
Raleigh, NC 27695

(919) 513-1439 (voice)
(919) 515-7867 (fax)

Biographical Sketch

Mark G. Keen was born and raised in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Mark is the youngest of three children. Mark worked his way through Western Kentucky University (his home town university) as a hospital ward clerk and keyboard player in a local rock band.  He received a B.S. degree in Biology with a minor in Chemistry in 1978 and proceeded directly to graduate school in Raleigh, NC where - under the direction of Drs. Thoyd Melton and Walter Dobrogosz - he characterized the regulation of nitrogen assimilation enzymes in Salmonella typhimurium, receiving his M.S. degree in Microbiology in 1980.   Mark then worked briefly at Vanderbilt University until beginning a pre-doctoral program in Microbiology at the University of Georgia in Athens in August of 1981.  While in Athens, GA he worked in the laboratory of Dr. William Finnerty on the genetics of alkane oxidation in Acinetobacter calcoaceticus and listened to some cool , alternative-rock bands.  While at UGA, Mark met Dr. Paul S. Hoffman who was a visiting professor in the Department of Microbiology, and decided in 1983 to move with him to the University of Tennessee - Memphis. While in Memphis,  Mark conducted research on the metabolism and genetics of the Legionnaire's disease bacterium, Legionella pneumophila.  After receiving his Ph.D. degree from UT-Memphis in 1987, Mark served as an NIH postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, conducting research on the agent of syphilis, Treponema pallidum and getting married to his wonderful wife, Anne.  Mark then served two years as a National Research Council/Centers for Disease Control Fellow at the Center for Disease Control's Center for Vector-borne Diseases in Fort Collins, CO - conducting research on the Lyme disease agent, Borrelia burgdorferi.  In 1992 Mark accepted a position as a Senior Research Scientist in Product Development at Roche Molecular Systems in New Jersey where he became a father (a wonderful son named Paul) and helped develop HIV Monitor - the first PCR-based, FDA-approved, human diagnostic test capable of determining patient viral load.  Mark moved to North Carolina (for the third time!) in 2000 to teach general biology and microbiology at Louisburg College for two years before moving to NC State's Department of Microbiology in 2002.