B.S. ​Stanford UniversityPh.D. ​Stanford UniversityPost-Doc ​Stanford University

"We study physical problem in infectious disease: enveloped viral entry and drug-resistant bacteria, with the goal of improving diagnosis and therapy."

Peter Kasson, Associate Professor of Molecular Physiology and of Biomedical Engineering

Peter Kasson addresses fundamental questions about infectious disease by studying the membrane biology of virus-host cell interactions using both computational models and experimental approaches. He received his MD and PhD from Stanford University, where he worked on antigen presentation with Harden McConnell and cell-surface signaling in T-cell activation with Axel Brunger and Mark Davis. During his postdoc with Vijay Pande, he helped develop the distributed-computing infrastructure behind Folding@Home and also studied the biophysics of vesicle fusion.

The Kasson lab now applies this study of membrane biophysics to viral infection, particularly influenza and Zika virus. We develop computational models, new physical tools, and combine the two for insight into viral infection. Another arm of the lab focuses on extreme drug resistance in bacteria, which started when Peter Kasson was visiting faculty with Google. We again combine large-scale simulations with experiments to improve diagnosis and therapy of drug-resistant infections.


  • Wallenberg Academy Fellow 2015

Research Interests

  • Biomedical Data Sciences
  • Biomolecular Systems
  • Computational Systems Biology
  • Quantitative Biosciences
  • Grid/Cloud/High-performance Computing
  • Machine Learning

In the News

Selected Publications

  • Disentangling Viral Membrane Fusion from Receptor Binding Using Synthetic DNA-Lipid Conjugates ABS Robert J. Rawle, Steven G. Boxer, Peter M. Kasson
  • Lipid Tail Protrusion in Simulations Predicts Fusogenic Activity of Influenza Fusion Peptide Mutants and Conformational Models ABS Per Larsson, Peter M. Kasson
  • Science Forum: Improving pandemic influenza risk assessment ABS Colin A Russell, Peter M Kasson, Ruben O Donis, Steven Riley, John Dunbar, Andrew Rambaut, Jason Asher, Stephen Burke, C Todd Davis
  • Dynamic heterogeneity controls diffusion and viscosity near biological interfaces Sander Pronk, Erik Lindahl & Peter M. Kasson
  • Copernicus: a new paradigm for parallel adaptive molecular dynamics ABS Sander Pronk, Per Larsson,Iman Pouya, Gregory R. Bowman, Imran S. Haque, Kyle Beauchamp, Berk Hess, Vijay S. Pande, Peter M. Kasson, Erik Lindahl