Dr. Melissa Maginnis

Dr. Melissa Maginnis has been appointed as Associate Director of the Center for
Undergraduate Research (CUGR) effective July 1st,  2020.  “Dr. Maginnis is one of our most
active and engaged faculty mentors, with demonstrated high quality research as evidenced by
the number of highly competitive awards won by her students,” said Assistant Vice President
Abedi who directs CUGR. “We are excited to welcome Dr. Maginnis to CUGR and look forward
to further growth of CUGR under her leadership.”
Dr. Melissa Maginnis, a recently-tenured faculty member in the Department of Molecular and
Biomedical Sciences, joined the UMaine faculty in 2014. She is a virologist, and her laboratory
is focused on understanding the cellular and molecular basis of viral disease. Defining how
viruses recognize and invade cells within the host can ultimately elucidate targets for novel
antiviral therapies to prevent or treat viral illnesses. “My research program is focused on viral
disease, a significant human health issue, which also provides excellent student training
opportunities.” “We now all understand the impact that viruses can have on human health and
our lives in general due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is critical that we continue to research
viral disease so that we can advance our knowledge in this area to be prepared for future viral
outbreaks.” Dr. Maginnis has served as the Lead of the UMS COVID-19 Scientific Advisory
Board since April to guide a team of UM and USM researchers to provide science-based
evidence for the safe planning of the potential future of the UMS.