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Eric Miller named Microbiology Department head

Media contact: Dr. Eric Miller, professor and head, Department of Microbiology, 919-515-2391 or

Dr. Eric Miller, a long-time member of the North Carolina State University faculty, has been named to head the Department of Microbiology in the university’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Department of Microbiology research and academic programs serve undergraduate and graduate students from across the N.C. State campus, and the department offers the only bachelor’s degree program in microbiology available in North Carolina.

Miller has served as interim head of the department since 2007. He joined the N.C. State faculty as an assistant professor in 1986, was promoted to associate professor in 1992 and to full professor in 2002.

Miller holds a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from California State University, Chico and a Ph.D. from Purdue University. Prior to joining the N.C. State faculty, he held a National Institutes of Health post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Colorado, where he worked with National Academy of Sciences member Larry Gold from 1983 to 1986. Miller also was a European Molecular Biology Organization Fellow in 1986 and 1987, working with Nobel Prize Laureate Sydney Brenner in the United Kingdom.

His research focuses on the genomics of bacteriophages, viruses that infect bacteria and are commonly known as phages. Areas of inquiry include developing biotechnology applications related to phages and phage products, functional microbial genomics and RNA diversity.

In the academic arena, Miller teaches graduate level microbial genetics and with Dr. Susan Carson, teaching assistant professor of plant biology, delivers an innovative introductory course in genomics that uses phages to teach students about DNA and the techniques used to extract information from the genetic code.

Written by: Dave Caldwell, 919.513.3127 or