Maria Marco

Maria Marco

Position Title
Associate Professor Food Science & Technology

3200 RMI South


  1. B.S. Pennsylvania State University
  2. Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley


Dr. Marco's research group is interested in food- and gut-associated bacteria that improve food quality, safety, and human health. Their work on gut health aims to establish the influence of diet on the composition and function of the intestinal microbiota and to direct the activity of the gut colonists by application of prebiotic ingredients and probiotic bacteria in foods and beverages. For this research, Dr. Marco's group is applying (meta)genomics methods to elucidate the mechanisms of dietary changes on host-microbe interactions in the mammalian intestine. Their study of food-associated bacteria is focused on characterizing the microbial communities associated with plants to understanding the roles of these microbes in promoting microbial food safety. In particular, Dr. Marco is interested in lactic acid bacteria and their roles in promoting food safety and gut health and in the production of fermented foods.