Thomas Mansell

Thomas (Tom) Mansell


Associate Professor, Karen and Dennis Vaughn Faculty Fellow


4136 Biorenewables Research Laboratory
617 Bissell Rd.
Ames, IA 50011-1098



  • B.S., Chemical Engineering, The Johns Hopkins University, 2004 (Second Major: Spanish)
  • M.S.E., Chemical Engineering, The Johns Hopkins University, 2005
  • Ph.D., Cornell University, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, 2011

Interest Areas

  • Synthetic biology for engineering microbial communities
  • Prebiotics, Probiotics, Synbiotics, and Postbiotics
  • Engineered Live Biotherapeutics
  • Glycobiology of the human gut microbiome


Google Scholar Profile
LinkedIn Profile
Research Website

Research Experience

Postdoctoral Research, University of Colorado, Boulder. 
Advisor: Ryan T. Gill
Synthetic Biology, Metabolic Engineering, Genome Engineering

Doctoral Research, Cornell University.
Advisors: Matthew DeLisa and Jeffrey Varner
Protein Folding/Solubility, Protein Engineering, Glycobiology, Systems Biology
Master’s Research, Johns Hopkins University. Advisor: Marc Ostermeier
Protein Engineering, Directed Evolution


Selected Recent Publications:

Murali SK, Mansell TJ. Next generation probiotics: Engineering live biotherapeutics. Biotechnology Advances. Mar 2:72:108336 (2024) doi:10.1016/j.biotechadv.2024.108336 (18 pp)

Wilson EJ, Natesh NS, Ghadermazi P, Pothuraju R, Prajapati DR, Pandey S, Kaifi JT, Dodam JR, Bryan JN, Lorson CL, Watrelot AA, Foster JM, Mansell TJ, Chan SHJ, Batra SK, Subbiah J, Rachagani S. Red Cabbage Juice-Mediated Gut Microbiota Modulation Improves Intestinal Epithelial Homeostasis and Ameliorates Colitis. International Journal of Molecular Sciences 25(1):539.(2023) doi: 10.3390/ijms25010539 (26 pp)

Byanju B, Sen S, Mansell TJ, Lamsal B. Evaluation of corn steep liquor as fermentation media for recombinant Lactococcus lactis producing antifreeze proteins. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 103(5), 2512-2521 doi:10.1002/jsfa.12461 (2023, 10 pp.)

Contreras-Ramos M, Mansell TJ. Leveraging quorum sensing to manipulate microbial dynamics. Current Opinion in Biomedical Engineering 2021 Sep, 100306. doi:10.1016/j.cobme.2021.100306 (invited review, 9 pp.)

Enam F, Kramer E, Robinson F, Alvarez-Acosta A, Cademartiri R, Mansell TJ. Paper-based Sensing of Fucosylated Biological Compounds. bioRxiv 2020.10.30.362889; (2020) doi: 10.1101/2020.10.30.362889 (preprint, 32 pp.)

Bai Y, Mansell TJ. Production and Sensing of Butyrate in a Probiotic E. coli strain. International Journal of Molecular Sciences 21(10), 3615 (2020) doi:10.3390/ijms21103615 (12 pp.)

Primary Strategic Research Area

Engineered Medicine