SMB Faculty Profiles

Cynthia Haseltine

Cynthia Haseltine

Associate Professor


Fall and Summer
MBioS 404 Molecular Biology: Introduction of prokaryotic and eukaryotic genome organization and gene expression, modern molecular techniques, experimental approaches, genome and gene function and analyses.

MBioS 494 Capstone Senior Project in Molecular Biosciences: Written paper and seminar presentation on laboratory research project.

Room: BLS 137
Office Phone: 509-335-6148
Room: BLS 140
Lab Phone: 509-335-6297


Research & Interests

I have two words for you:

Boiling Acid


Ok, maybe it should be more like nearly boiling acid, but I think you get the idea. It's harsh, it's dangerous, and it shouldn't support life. But it does. And not only can nearly boiling acid support life, it's practically teeming with it. Work in our lab is focused on organisms that shouldn't be able to live where they do and how they manage to live so very well. Specifically, we're interested in microscopic organisms called Archaea that are able to flourish in hot springs across the planet, as long as those spots are both very hot and very acidic. We're studying how these microbes survive in their hot springs, including ways they fix their DNA when it becomes damaged and what types of microbial warfare they use to compete in their environment. One aspect of our work is aimed toward understanding how cells resist DNA damage and repair broken DNA, both of which are important for unraveling the mechanisms behind cancer formation. A newer direction in the lab focuses on novel antimicrobials produced by Archaea which are promising alternatives for battling antibiotic resistant pathogens.

More Information

Read about our lab and research.

Dr. Haseltine's video interviews:

WSU University Video

WSU News

WSU Magazine

Select Publications
  • Graham WJ, Rolfsmeier ML, Haseltine CA (2013) An archaeal RadA paralog influences presynaptic filament formation. DNA Repair (Amst). 12(6), 403-13 PMID: 23622866 PMCID: PMC4084651
  • Graham WJ, Haseltine CA. (2013) A recombinase paralog from the hyperthermophilic crenarchaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus enhances SsoRadA ssDNA binding and strand displacement. Gene. 515(1), 128-39 PMID: 23220019 PMCID: PMC4057309
  • C. Haseltine (2013) Single-stranded DNA-Binding Proteins (SSBs). Brenner’s Encyclopedia of Genetics Second Edition PMID: PMCID:
  • Rolfsmeier M, Laughery M, Haseltine C (2011) Repair of DNA double-strand breaks induced by ionizing radiation damage correlates with upregulation of homologous recombination genes in Sulfolobus solfataricus. Journal of Molecular Biology 414, 485-498 PMID: PMCID:
  • Rolfsmeier ML, Laughery MF, Haseltine CA. (2010) Repair of DNA double-strand breaks following UV damage in three Sulfolobus solfataricus strains. J Bacteriol. 192(19), 4954-62 PMID: 20675475 PMCID: PMC2944543
  • Rolfsmeier ML, Haseltine CA. (2010) The single-stranded DNA binding protein of Sulfolobus solfataricus acts in the presynaptic step of homologous recombination. J Mol Biol. 397(1), 31-45 PMID: 20080104 PMCID:
  • Haseltine CA, Kowalczykowski SC. (2009) An archaeal Rad54 protein remodels DNA and stimulates DNA strand exchange by RadA. Nucleic Acids Res. 37(8), 2757-70 PMID: 19282450 PMCID: PMC2677860
  • Rolfsmeier M, Haseltine C (2008) Recombination processes and proteins in the Archaea. Archaea: New Models for Prokaryotic Biology. 121-146 PMID: PMCID:
  • Schmuckli-Maurer J, Rolfsmeier M, Nguyen H, Heyer WD (2003) Molecular characterization of the alpha-glucosidase gene (malA) from the hyperthermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus. Nucleic Acids Res. 31(3), 1013-23 PMID: 12560498 PMCID: PMC149210
  • Haseltine CA, Kowalczykowski SC (2002) A distinctive single-strand DNA-binding protein from the Archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus. Mol Microbiol. 43(6), 1505-15 PMID: 11971263 PMCID:
  • Haseltine C, Hill T, Montalvo-Rodriguez R, Kemper SK, Shand RF, Blum P (2001) Secreted euryarchaeal microhalocins kill hyperthermophilic crenarchaea. J Bacteriol. 183(1), 287-91 PMID: 11114928 PMCID: PMC94877
  • Seitz EM, Haseltine CA, Kowalczykowski SC (2001) DNA recombination and repair in the Archaea. Adv Appl Microbiol. 50, 101-169 PMID: 11677683 PMCID:
  • Montalvo-Rodriguez R, Haseltine C, Huess-LaRossa K, Clemente T, Soto J, Staswick P, Blum P (2000) Autohydrolysis of plant polysaccharides using transgenic hyperthermophilic enzymes. Biotechnol Bioeng. 70(2), 151-9 PMID: 10972926 PMCID:
  • Haseltine C, Montalvo-Rodriguez R, Carl A, Bini E, Blum P (1999) Extragenic pleiotropic mutations that repress glycosyl hydrolase expression in the hyperthermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus. Genetics 152(4), 1353-61 PMID: 10430566 PMCID: PMC1460713
  • Haseltine C, Montalvo-Rodriguez R, Bini E, Carl A, Blum P (1999) Coordinate transcriptional control in the hyperthermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus. J Bacteriol. 181(13), 3920-7 PMID: 10383958 PMCID: PMC93880
  • Haseltine C, Rolfsmeier M, Blum P (1996) The glucose effect and regulation of alpha-amylase synthesis in the hyperthermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus. J Bacteriol. 178(4), 945-50 PMID: 8576067 PMCID: PMC177752

List of Publications

Washington State University