steven frese

Steven Frese

Assistant Professor



Ancient relationships between hosts and microbes provide insight into key biological processes including digestion, infection, nutrition, resistance to disease, immune programming, and metabolic development. By understanding these relationships, and how they are created or maintained, my work seeks to build rational, translational technologies and therapies. Using biotechnology, molecular biology, and an understanding of ecological and evolutionary relationships, we aim to improve our understanding of the gut microbiome and food. We also work to actively facilitate the dissemination of these discoveries and innovations to practice in industry, medicine, and research.


Funding Awards

  • National Institutes for Health, National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Ruth Kirschstein NRSA Postdoctoral Fellowship. 2015 “The Impact of Milk Glycopeptide and Bifidobacterium on the Weaning Gut Microbiome” F32AT00853301


  • Metabolic revision of mammalian infants.
  • Compositions that metabolize or sequester free sugar monomers and uses thereof.
  • Reduction of milk glycans and their degradation products in the neonate gut
  • Transient commensal microorganism for improving gut health.
  • Food compositions for weaning.
  • Methods for facilitation maturation of the mammalian immune system.
  • Oligosaccharide compositions and their use during transitional phases of the mammalian gut microbiome.
  • Compositions and method of use for H5-competent Bifidobacterium longum subsp. Infantis.
  • Methods for determining dysbiosis in the intestinal microbiome.
  • Activation of conditionally-expressed oligosaccharide pathways during fermentation of probiotic strains.
  • Novel oligosaccharides for use in prebiotic applications.
  • Compositions and methods to promote host defense and stimulate, expand, and/or reset T-cell repertoires.

Awards, Honors, & Professional Recognition

  • European Probiotic Association, Jules Tournut Probiotics Prize for innovative and significant contributions to probiotic research in animal nutrition (2014)   


B.S. Allegheny College
Ph.D. University of Nebraska, Lincoln



Bifidobacteria-mediated immune system imprinting early in life


Cell Volume 184, Issue 15, 22 July 2021, Pages 3884-3898.e11

Henrick, B.M., Rodriguez, L., Lakshmikanth, T., Pou, C., Henckel, E., Arzoomand, A., Olin, A., Wang, J., Mikes, J., Tan, Z., Chen, Y., Ehrlich, A.M., Bernhardsson, A.K., Mugabo, C.H., Ambrosiani, Y., Gustafsson, A., Chew, S., Brown, H.K., Prambs, J., Bohlin, K., Mitchell, R.D. Underwood, M.A., Smilowitz, J.T., German, J. B., Frese, S.A., Brodin, P.