Amy Banka

University Fellows Cohort Member, 2021-2022
PhD Student, Microbiology
Portrait of Amy Banka
she, her, hers

Amy is a doctoral student in the Microbiology program with an interest in how a pathogen’s traits interact with specific environmental and host factors – including genetics, nutrition, and co-infection – to alter disease presentation and severity. She is particularly invested in the impacts these interactions have on individuals and communities and how this knowledge can be utilized to prevent and treat disease. Amy is a member of Dr. Koenraad Van Doorslaer’s lab which works primarily with oncogenic virus, such as HPV (the leading cause of cervical cancer). Prior to her arrival at the University of Arizona, Amy attended the University of Oklahoma, where she contributed to interdisciplinary, laboratory-based research focused on disease biology and drug development. She credits her National Merit Scholarship, which enabled her undergraduate studies, to the education she received at the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science, a residential magnet high school. Outside of the lab, Amy enjoys rock climbing, cooking, gardening, or hiking with her pony-sized dog, Percy.