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Shaohua Zhao DVM, MPVM, PhD.

Shaohua Zhao, DVM, MPVM, PhD
Shaohua Zhao DVM, MPVM, PhD.

Division of Animal and Food Microbiology


Dr. Shaohua Zhao is a senior research scientist in the Division of Animal and Food Microbiology at the Office of Research within FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine. She received her veterinary degree in 1982 from the College of Veterinary Medicine at China’s Guizhou University, and her Master of Preventive Veterinary Medicine (MPVM) in 1988 and PhD in 1991 from University of California, Davis. She joined FDA as a research microbiologist in 1998. Her primary responsibilities at CVM include conducting and coordinating research for the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) retail meat program with CDC and USDA, advancing genotyping technologies to support foodborne outbreak investigations, and foodborne diseases source attribution.


  • Antimicrobial resistance mechanisms, and emerging resistance genes and their origin, evolution and dissemination
  • MDR plasmid biology, evolution, epidemiology, and selective pressure associated with MDR development and dissemination in bacteria from different sources
  • Advanced molecular subtyping technologies for outbreak investigations, foodborne disease source attribution, and molecular epidemiology of MDR zoonotic foodborne pathogens

Select Publications

Zhao, S., S. Mukherjee, C. H. Hsu, S. Yang, C. Li1, H. Tate, C.  Morales, J. Haro, S. Thitaram, G. Tillman, U. Dessai and P. McDermott. 2019. Genomic Analysis of Emerging Florfenicol Resistant Campylobacter coli isolated from the Cecal Contents of Cattle in the U.S. mSphere. May/June 2019 4(3): e00367-19. https://dol.org/10.1128/mSphere.00367-19.

Hsu, C. H., C. Li, M. Hoffmann, P. McDermott, J. Abbott, S. Ayers, G. Tyson, H. Tate, K. Yao, M. Allard, and S. Zhao. 2019.  Comparative Genomic Analysis of Multidrug-resistant Salmonella Dublin from Sick Cattle and Retail Beef.  Microbial Drug Resistance. DOI: 10.1089/mdr.2019.0045

Zhao, S., S. Mukherjee, C.  Li, S. B. Jones, S. Young and P. F. McDermott. 2018. Cloning and Expression of Novel Aminoglycoside Phosphotransferase Genes from Campylobacter and Their Role in the Resistance to Six Aminoglycosides. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. 2018. 62 (1):e01682-17.

McDermott, P. F., H. Tyson, C. Kabera, Y. Chen, C. Li, J. P. Folster, S. L. Ayers, C. Lam, H. P. Tate, and S. Zhao. 2016. The use of whole-genome sequencing for detecting antimicrobial resistance in nontyphoidal Salmonella. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (published online: doi:10.1128/AAC.01030-16).

Zhao, S., G. H. Tyson, Y. Chen, C. Li, S. Mukherjee, S.Young, C. Lam, J. P. Folster, J. M. Whichard, and P. F. McDermott. 2016. Whole-genome sequencing analysis accurately predicts antimicrobial resistance phenotypes in Campylobacter. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 82(02):459–466.

Tyson, G. H., C. Li, P. F. McDermott, and S. Zhao. 2016. Using whole-genome sequencing to determine appropriate streptomycin epidemiological cutoffs for Salmonella and Escherichia coli. FEMS Microbiology Letters. 363(4): 1–5.

Zhao, S., S. Mukherjee, Y. Chen, C. Li, S. Young, M. Warren, J. Abbott, S. Friedman, C. Kabera, M. Karlsson, and P. F. McDermott. 2015. Novel gentamicin resistance genes in Campylobacter isolated from humans and retail meats in the United States. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 70: 1314–1321.

Contact Information
Shaohua Zhao
+1 (240) 402-5472
+1 (301) 210-4685