Wenjun Ma, PhD

Wenjun Ma, PhD

Department of Veterinary Pathobiology

Molecular Microbiology and Immunology

Professor Veterinary Pathobiology
Professor Molecular Microbiology & Immunology



Dr. Ma’s research interests are viral diseases, with an emphasis on emerging zoonotic viral infections. His current research focuses on understanding mechanisms of pathogenesis and transmissibility, virus-host interaction and developing vaccines and antivirals for different zoonotic viral pathogens, such as Influenza virus, Rift Valley fever virus, SARS-CoV-2, Hantavirus and other viral pathogens. He is also interested in development of rapid detection systems for viral diseases. His long-term goals are to apply molecular biology and virology approaches to generate countermeasures and scientific knowledge that can be used to address current challenge from influenza and other important diseases for industry and public health needs.

Academic Information

Professor Veterinary Pathobiology
Professor Molecular Microbiology & Immunology


E115A Veterinary Medicine Bldg
Columbia, MO 65211
United States

P. 573-882-2863

Research Interests

  • Influenza
  • Rift Valley fever
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Virology
  • Zoonotic viral disease
  • Virus-host interaction
  • Vaccine
  • Antiviral
  • Animal model
  • Bat-derived viruses

Areas of Expertise

  • Influenza
  • Rift Valley fever
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Virology
  • Microbiology
  • Vaccine
  • Antiviral
  • Animal model

Education & Training


2008, Iowa State University and National Animal Disease Center, USDA/ARS, Iowa, USA

Post-Graduate School

2003, PhD, Justus-Liebig-University, Giessen, Germany

Awards & Honors

  • 2019 Zoetis Animal Health Award for Research Excellence, College of Veterinary Medicine, Kansas State University


A full list of publications: W Ma publications

Zhang J, Yang W, Roy S, Liu H, Roberts, M. R, Wang L, Lei Shi L, Ma W.
Tight junction protein occludin is an internalization factor for SARS-CoV-2 infection and mediates virus cell-to-cell transmission.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2023 Apr 25;120(17):e2218623120

Wang L, Zheng B, Shen Z, Deb Nath N, Li Y, Walsh T, Mitchell W, Li Y, He D, Lee J, Moore S, Tong S, Zhang S, Ma W.
Isolation and characterization of mammalian orthoreovirus from bats in the United States.
J Med Virol. 2023 Feb;95(2):e28492.

Ganti K, Bagga A, Ferreri L, Geiger G, Carnaccini S, Caceres C, Seibert B, Li Y, Wang L, Kwon T, Li Y, Morozov I, Ma W, Richt J, Perez D, Koelle K, Lowen AC.
Influenza A virus reassortment in mammals gives rise to genetically distinct within-host subpopulations.
Nature Communications. 2022. 13: 6846.

Artiaga BL, Morozov I, Ransburgh R, Kwon T, Balaraman V, Indran S, Madrid DM, Gu W, Henningson J, Ma W, Driver JP, Richt JA.
Evaluating α-galactosylceramide as an adjuvant for live attenuated influenza vaccines in pigs.  
Animal diseases. 2022, 2(1):19.

Zhou J, Choi S, Liu H, Zhang J, Tian Y, Edlow AG, Ezashi T, Roberts RM, Ma W, Schust DJ.
Is SARS-CoV-2 Infection a Risk Factor for Early Pregnancy Loss? ACE2 and TMPRSS2 Coexpression and Persistent Replicative Infection in Primitive Trophoblast.
J Infect Dis. 2021 Dec 1; 224(Suppl 6): S660–S669.

Wang L, Li Y, Walsh T, Shen T, Li Y, Deb Nath N, Lee J, Zheng B, Tao Y, Paden YR, Queen K, Tong S, Zhang S, Ma W.
Isolation and characterization of novel reassortant mammalian orthoreovirus from pigs in the United States.
Emerg Microbes Infect. 2021; 10(1): 1137–1147.

Lee J, Li Y, Li Y, Cino-Ozuna AG, Duff M, Lang Y, Ma J, Sunwoo S, Richt JA, Ma W. 
Bat influenza vectored NS1-truncated live vaccine protects pigs against heterologous virus challenge.
Vaccine. 2021 Apr 1;39(14):1943-1950.

Yang W, Schountz T, Ma W.
Bat Influenza Viruses: Current Status and Perspective.  
Viruses. 2021 Mar 25;13(4):547.

Gaudreault NN, Trujillo JD, Carossino M, Meekins DA, Morozov I, Madden DW, Indran SV, Bold D, Balaraman V, Kwon T, Artiaga BL, Cool K, García-Sastre A, Ma W, Wilson WC, Henningson J, Balasuriya UBR, Richt JA.
SARS-CoV-2 infection, disease and transmission in domestic cats.
Emerg Microbes Infect. 2020; 9(1): 2322–2332.

Ma W.
Swine influenza virus: Current status and challenge.  
Virus Res. 2020 Oct 15;288:198118.

Meekins DA, Morozov I, Trujillo JD, Gaudreault NN, Bold D, Carossino M, Artiaga BL, Indran SV, Kwon T, Velmurugan Balaraman V, Madden DW, Feldmann H, Henningson J, Ma W, Balasuriya UBR, Richt JA.
Susceptibility of swine cells and domestic pigs to SARS-CoV-2.
Emerg Microbes Infect. 2020; 9(1): 2278–2288.

Ciminski K, Ran W, Gorka M, Lee J, Malmlov A, Schinköthe J, Eckley M, Murrieta RA, Aboellail TA, Campbell CL, Ebel GD, Ma J, Pohlmann A, Franzke K, Ulrich R, Hoffmann D, García-Sastre A, Ma W, Schountz T, Beer M, Schwemmle M. 
Bat influenza viruses transmit among bats but are poorly adapted to non-bat species. 
Nat Microbiol. 2019 Dec;4(12):2298-2309.

Wang R, Zhu Y, Lin X, Ren C, Zhao J, Wang F, Gao X, Xiao R, Zhao L, Chen H, Jin M, Ma W, Zhou H.
Influenza M2 protein regulates MAVS-mediated signaling pathway through interacting with MAVS and increasing ROS production.
Autophagy. 2019 Jul;15(7):1163-1181.

Ma J, Shen H, McDowell C, Liu Q, Duff M, Lee J, Lang Y, Hesse D, Richt JA, Ma W.
Virus survival and fitness when multiple genotypes and subtypes of influenza A viruses exist and circulate in swine.
Virology. 2019 Apr 9;532:30-38.

Lang Y, Li Y, Jasperson D, Henningson J, Lee J, Ma J, Li Y, Duff M, Liu H, Bai D, McVey S, Richt JA, Ikegami T, Wilson WC, Ma W. 
Identification and evaluation of antivirals for Rift Valley fever virus. 
Vet Microbiol. 2019 Mar;230:110-116.