David A. Hunstad, M.D.  dhunstad@wustl.edu

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Division Chief, Infectious Diseases
Professor, Infectious Diseases
Professor, Molecular Microbiology
Infectious DiseasesMolecular Microbiology

phone: (314) 454-6050

Clinical Interests

Dr. Hunstad evaluates children with a variety of infectious diseases at St. Louis Children's Hospital. In his research laboratory in the McDonnell Pediatric Research Building, he studies the interactions of pathogenic bacteria with their hosts. He is particularly interested in mechanisms by which Gram-negative pathogens interfere with host immune responses in order to establish infection. Related projects in the laboratory are aimed at determining how bacteria assemble and utilize outer membrane protein virulence factors on their surfaces. He also participates in collaborative studies of methicillin-resistant Staph infections in children. The overarching goal of these studies is to develop new targets useful in the prevention and treatment of common bacterial infections.


  • BA, summa cum laude, Carleton College1991
  • MD, Washington University School of Medicine1995


  • Intern and Resident in Pediatrics, St. Louis Children's Hospital1995 - 1998
  • Chief Resident in Pediatrics, St. Louis Children's Hospital1998 - 1999
  • Fellow, Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Washington University2000 - 2003

Licensure and Board Certification

  • 1998 - PresMO, Physician and Surgeon
  • 1999 - PresAmerican Board of Pediatrics
  • 2003 - PresABP Sub-board of Pediatric Infectious Diseases
  • 2008Neonatal Resuscitation Program

Honors and Awards

  • Dean's List, Carleton College1987 - 1991
  • CRC Press Award, Carleton College1988
  • Phi Beta Kappa Sophomore Award, Carleton College1989
  • Barry M. Goldwater Foundation Scholarship1990 - 1991
  • USA Today All-USA Academic Team1990 - 1991
  • Virgil Loeb, MD, Distinguished Alumni Scholarship, Washington University1991 - 1995
  • Finalist, American College of Physicians Award for Excellence in Physical Diagnosis1994
  • Fellow, Pediatric Scientist Development Program2001 - 2004
  • NIH Pediatric Research Loan Repayment Program Award2002 - 2006
  • Scholar, WU Child Health Research Center of Excellence2005 - 2008
  • Wall of Honor, SOAR Program, Red Wing, MN2006
  • Basil O'Connor Scholar Award, March of Dimes Foundation2009
  • Residents' Lecture Award (x2), St. Louis Children's Hospital2010
  • David Hunstad, MD, Distinguished Alumni Scholarship named by Washington University School of Medicine2015
  • Fellow, Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society2015
  • Residents’ Lecture Award, St. Louis Children’s Hospital2015
  • Best Doctors in America (St. Louis Magazine)2015 - 2018
  • Featured New Member, American Pediatric Society2017
  • Elected Member, Alpha Omega Alpha2018
  • Faculty Achievement Award, WU Medical Center Alumni Association2019
  • Fellow, Infectious Diseases Society of America2020
  • Named inaugural Arnold W. Strauss, MD, Endowed Professor for Mentoring, WUSM2022

Recent Publications view all (56)

  1. Distinguishing Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children From COVID-19, Kawasaki Disease and Toxic Shock Syndrome. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2022;41(4):315-323. PMCID:PMC8919949  PMID:35093995 
  2. Serologic and Cytokine Signatures in Children With Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome and Coronavirus Disease 2019. Open Forum Infect Dis. 2022;9(3):ofac070. PMCID:PMC8883592  PMID:35237703 
  3. Morphologic Design of Silver-Bearing Sugar-Based Polymer Nanoparticles for Uroepithelial Cell Binding and Antimicrobial Delivery. Nano Lett. 2021;21(12):4990-4998. PMCID:PMC8545462  PMID:34115938 
  4. A host receptor enables type 1 pilus-mediated pathogenesis of Escherichia coli pyelonephritis. PLoS Pathog. 2021;17(1):e1009314. PMID:33513212 
  5. Sex differences in population dynamics during formation of kidney bacterial communities by uropathogenic Escherichia coli. Infect Immun. 2021. PMID:33468577 
  6. Androgen-Influenced Polarization of Activin A-Producing Macrophages Accompanies Post-pyelonephritic Renal Scarring. Front Immunol. 2020;11:1641. PMCID:PMC7399094  PMID:32849562 
  7. Incidence and treatment of hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis in hospitalized children with Ehrlichia infection. Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2020;e28436. PMID:32706439 
  8. HOME2: Household vs. Personalized Decolonization in Households of Children with Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Skin and Soft Tissue Infection - A Randomized Clinical Trial. Clin Infect Dis. 2020. PMID:32521007 
  9. Environmental Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus Contamination, Persistent Colonization, and Subsequent Skin and Soft Tissue Infection. JAMA Pediatr. 2020;174(6):552-562. PMCID:PMC7105954  PMID:32227144 
  10. TGFβ1 orchestrates renal fibrosis following Escherichia coli pyelonephritis. Physiol Rep. 2020;8(6):e14401. PMCID:PMC7104652  PMID:32227630 
  11. Carriage of the toxic shock syndrome toxin gene by contemporary community-associated Staphylococcus aureus isolates. J Pediatric Infect Dis Soc. 2018. PMID:30285124 
  12. Goblet cell associated antigen passages are inhibited during Salmonella typhimurium infection to prevent pathogen dissemination and limit responses to dietary antigens. Mucosal Immunol. 2018;11(4):1103-1113. PMCID:PMC6037413  PMID:29445136 
  13. Androgen exposure potentiates formation of intratubular communities and renal abscesses by Escherichia coli. Kidney Int. 2018. doi:10.1016/j.kint.2018.04.023  PMID:30041870 
  14. Mass spectrometric measurement of urinary kynurenine-to-tryptophan ratio in children with and without urinary tract infection. Clin Biochem. 2018;56:83-88. PMCID:PMC6007864  PMID:29679555 
  15. High levels of cyclic di-GMP in Klebsiella pneumoniae attenuate virulence in the lung. Infect Immun. 2018;86(2):00647-17. doi:10.1128/IAI.00647-17  PMCID:PMC5778367  PMID:29158434 
  16. A vinyl ether-functional polycarbonate as a template for multiple postpolymerization modifications. Macromolecules. 2018;51:3233-3242. doi:10.1021/acs.macromol.8b00047  PMCID:PMC6002957  PMID:29915431 
  17. Renal scar formation and kidney function following antibiotic-treated murine pyelonephritis. Dis Model Mech. 2017;10(11):1371-1379. PMCID:PMC5719254  PMID:28882930 
  18. Synthesis, characterization, in vitro SAR and in vivo evaluation of N,N'bisnaphthylmethyl 2-alkyl substituted imidazolium salts against NSCLC. Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2017;27(4):764-775. PMCID:PMC5575737  PMID:28126518 
  19. Androgens enhance male urinary tract infection severity in a new model. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2016;27(6):1625-34. PMCID:PMC4884108  PMID:26449605 
  20. Local generation of kynurenines mediates inhibition of neutrophil chemotaxis by uropathogenic Escherichia coli. Infect Immun. 2016;84(4):1176-83. PMCID:PMC4807489  PMID:26857571 
  21. Klebsiella pneumoniae FimK promotes virulence in murine pneumonia. J Infect Dis. 2016;213(4):649-58. doi:10.1093/infdis/jiv440  PMCID:PMC4721909  PMID:26347570 
  22. Imidazolium salts as small-molecule urinary bladder exfoliants in a murine model. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2015;59(9):5494-5502. doi:10.1128/AAC.00881-15  PMCID:PMC4538537  PMID:26124168 
  23. Vitamin D sufficiency and Staphylococcus aureus infection in children. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2015;34(5):544-5. doi:10.1097/INF.0000000000000667  PMCID:PMC4400212  PMID:25860535 
  24. Cathelicidin augments epithelial receptivity and pathogenesis in experimental Escherichia coli cystitis. J Infect Dis. 2015;211(7):1164-73. doi:10.1093/infdis/jiu577  PMCID:PMC4366604  PMID:25336727 
  25. Preparation and in vitro antimicrobial activity of silver-bearing degradable polymeric nanoparticles of polyphosphoester-block-poly(L-lactide). ACS Nano. 2015;9(2):1995-2008. doi:10.1021/nn507046h  PMCID:PMC4455953  PMID:25621868 
  26. Bacterial lysis liberates the neutrophil migration suppressor YbcL from the periplasm of uropathogenic Escherichia coli. Infect Immun. 2014;82(12):4921-30. PMCID:PMC4249291  PMID:25183735 
  27. Molecular epidemiology of recurrent cutaneous methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections in children. J Pediatric Infect Dis Soc. 2014;3(3):261-264. doi:10.1093/jpids/pit046  PMCID:PMC4381745  PMID:25844165 
  28. Scurvy revealed by difficulty walking: three cases in young children. J Clin Rheumatol. 2014;20(4):224-8. doi:10.1097/RHU.0000000000000101  PMID:24847751 
  29. Vancomycin trough concentrations in overweight or obese pediatric patients. Pharmacotherapy. 2013;33(12):1273-7. doi:10.1002/phar.1321  PMID:23798327 
  30. Quantitative assessment of human neutrophil migration across a cultured bladder epithelium. J Vis Exp. 2013;81:e50919. doi:10.3791/50919  PMCID:PMC3934319  PMID:24300797 
  31. A newborn with hydrops, hydrocephalus and ophthalmologic abnormalities. J Ped Infect Dis Soc. 2013;2:391-393. PMID:26619503 
  32. A serologic correlate of protective immunity against community-onset Staphylococcus aureus infection. Clin Infect Dis. 2013;56(11):1554-61. doi:10.1093/cid/cit123  PMCID:PMC3641868  PMID:23446627 
  33. YbcL of uropathogenic Escherichia coli suppresses transepithelial neutrophil migration. Infect Immun. 2012;80(12):4123-32. doi:10.1128/IAI.00801-12  PMCID:PMC3497442  PMID:22966043 
  34. Oseltamivir dosing in premature infants. J Infect Dis. 2012;206(6):847-50. doi:10.1093/infdis/jis471  PMID:22807525 
  35. Induction of indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase by uropathogenic bacteria attenuates innate responses to epithelial infection. J Infect Dis. 2012;205(12):1830-9. doi:10.1093/infdis/jis280  PMCID:PMC3415894  PMID:22474038 
  36. Synthetic polymer nanoparticles conjugated with FimH(A) from E. coli pili to emulate the bacterial mode of epithelial internalization. J Am Chem Soc. 2012;134(9):3938-41. doi:10.1021/ja2091917  PMCID:PMC3325780  PMID:22360307 
  37. Attenuation of human neutrophil migration and function by uropathogenic bacteria. Microbes Infect. 2011;13(6):555-65. doi:10.1016/j.micinf.2011.01.017  PMCID:PMC3092803  PMID:21315174 
  38. A second target of the antimalarial and antibacterial agent fosmidomycin revealed by cellular metabolic profiling. Biochemistry. 2011;50(17):3570-7. doi:10.1021/bi200113y  PMCID:PMC3082593  PMID:21438569 
  39. Morphological plasticity promotes resistance to phagocyte killing of uropathogenic Escherichia coli. Microbes Infect. 2011;13(5):426-37. doi:10.1016/j.micinf.2010.12.004  PMCID:PMC3071881  PMID:21182979 
  40. The natural history of contemporary Staphylococcus aureus nasal colonization in community children. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2011;30(4):349-51. doi:10.1097/INF.0b013e3181fe075e  PMCID:PMC3077955  PMID:21412205 
  41. Shell crosslinked nanoparticles carrying silver antimicrobials as therapeutics. Chem Commun (Camb). 2010;46(1):121-3. doi:10.1039/b916559b  PMCID:PMC2978063  PMID:20024313 
  42. OmpA of uropathogenic Escherichia coli promotes postinvasion pathogenesis of cystitis. Infect Immun. 2009;77(12):5245-51. doi:10.1128/IAI.00670-09  PMCID:PMC2786482  PMID:19797074 
  43. Contribution of genetically restricted, methicillin-susceptible strains to the ongoing epidemic of community-acquired Staphylococcus aureus infections. Clin Infect Dis. 2009;49(4):536-42. doi:10.1086/600881  PMCID:PMC2965061  PMID:19589082 
  44. Virulence gene expression in human community-acquired Staphylococcus aureus infection. J Infect Dis. 2009;199(3):294-301. doi:10.1086/595982  PMCID:PMC2843142  PMID:19115951 
  45. Components of SurA required for outer membrane biogenesis in uropathogenic Escherichia coli. PLoS One. 2008;3(10):e3359. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0003359  PMCID:PMC2556385  PMID:18836534 
  46. Morphological plasticity as a bacterial survival strategy. Nat Rev Microbiol. 2008;6(2):162-8. doi:10.1038/nrmicro1820  PMID:18157153 
  47. Salmonella ovarian abscess in an adolescent. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2007;26(6):548-9. doi:10.1097/INF.0b013e31804b21b2  PMID:17529879 
  48. Histoplasmosis in a child with JRA on low-dose methotrexate. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2007;46(1):177-8. doi:10.1093/rheumatology/kel375  PMID:17114804 
  49. Filamentation by Escherichia coli subverts innate defenses during urinary tract infection. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006;103(52):19884-9. doi:10.1073/pnas.0606329104  PMCID:PMC1750882  PMID:17172451 
  50. Maturation of intracellular Escherichia coli communities requires SurA. Infect Immun. 2006;74(8):4793-800. doi:10.1128/IAI.00355-06  PMCID:PMC1539609  PMID:16861667 
  51. Periplasmic peptidyl prolyl cis-trans isomerases are not essential for viability, but SurA is required for pilus biogenesis in Escherichia coli. J Bacteriol. 2005;187(22):7680-6. doi:10.1128/JB.187.22.7680-7686.2005  PMCID:PMC1280321  PMID:16267292 
  52. Suppression of bladder epithelial cytokine responses by uropathogenic Escherichia coli. Infect Immun. 2005;73(7):3999-4006. doi:10.1128/IAI.73.7.3999-4006.2005  PMCID:PMC1168571  PMID:15972487 
  53. Antibody responses and protection from pyelonephritis following vaccination with purified Escherichia coli PapDG protein. J Urol. 2004;171(4):1682-5. doi:10.1097/01.ju.0000116123.05160.43  PMCID:PMC2838480  PMID:15017266 
  54. CD14- and Toll-like receptor-dependent activation of bladder epithelial cells by lipopolysaccharide and type 1 piliated Escherichia coli. Infect Immun. 2003;71(3):1470-80. PMCID:PMC148872  PMID:12595465 
  55. Successful eradication of mucormycosis occurring in a pulmonary allograft. J Heart Lung Transplant. 1999;18(8):801-4. PMID:10512529 
  56. Diastereoselectivity of enolate anion protonation: H/D exchange of beta-substituted ethyl butanoates in ethanol-d. J Am Chem Soc. 1997;119:479-486. 
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