Russell W. Carlson did his undergraduate work at North Park College in Chicago, IL. After serving four years in the United States Navy, he resumed his studies, receiving his Ph.D in Biochemistry from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He then performed two years of post-doctoral research at the University of Colorado. Dr. Carlson served as Professor with the Chemistry Department at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, IL. In 1988 Dr. Carlson became a member of the Complex Carbohydrate Research Center at the University of Georgia in Athens, GA where he currently serves as Technical Director, Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, and Adjunct Professor of Microbiology.
1976-78. University of Colorado, Boulder, Chemistry Department. NSF and NIH Postdoctoral Fellow 1976 University of Colorado, Boulder. Ph.D., Biochemistry.Dissertation: Purification and Characterization of Ascorbate-2-Sulfate Sulfohydrolase from Bovine Liver.

1974 University of Colorado, Boulder. M.S., Biochemistry. Thesis: Purification and Characterization of Ascorbate-2-Sulfate Sulfohydrolase from Bovine Liver. 1968 North Park College, Chicago, Illinois. B.A. in Chemistry & Mathematics
Research Interests
Dr. Carlson's research is directed toward determining how a bacterium can infect a plant or animal cell. One system under investigation is the beneficial (symbiotic) infection of legumes (pea, bean, alfalfa, clover, etc.) by nitrogen-fixing bacteria called rhizobia. Complex molecules that are part of the cell membrane of these bacteria are required for infection of the plant root cells and the focus of this research is to determine the function of specific changes to these molecules that occur when the bacterium comes into contact with the plant cell. This project has potential practical applications for the improvement of crop yields, understanding plant development, and how the plant defends itself against potential pathogens. Dr. Carlson also has projects directed toward determining the mechanism of virulence of pathogenic bacteria such as those which cause meningitis. This work has potential applications for the development of vaccines, and for the prevention of sepsis (also known as toxic shock). To support this research, Dr. Carlson has received grants in excess of $6 million from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture.
He has authored and co-authored more than 125 articles in various peer-reviewed journals, has three patents, and has given numerous invited lectures at various meetings and Universities throughout the U.S. as well is in Europe and South America.