Calvin (Ho-Fung) Lau

Research Scientist

Current research and/or projects

Dr. Lau's current research aims at developing molecular tools to enhance the capability of CFIA laboratories in detecting and characterizing bacterial foodborne pathogens, and, gaining a better understanding towards the microbiome and resistome structures of food. 

Research and/or project statements

Food microbiome profiling 

Cultural enrichment dynamics of foodborne bacterial pathogens

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) metagenomics

Microbial diagnostic method development 

Professional activities / interests

Associate editor  - Microbiome (2020  - )

Associate editor - Environmental Microbiome (2020 - )

Review editor - Frontiers in Veterinary Science (2021 - )

Education and awards

B.Sc. (Hons.) Pharmacology and Toxicology (double-specialist), University of Toronto (Canada)

> University of Toronto (Dr. Lee Shau Kee - Hong Kong) International scholar

Ph.D. Molecular Pharmacology, University of Cambridge (England)

> Peterhouse Graduate Studentship

Post doctoral Queen's University (Canada)

NSERC Visiting Research Fellowship, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, London (Canada)


Key publications

Brown, Liam P., Roger Murray, Andrew Scott, Yuan-Ching Tien, Calvin Ho-Fung Lau, Vera Tai, and Edward Topp. “Responses of the Soil Bacterial Community, Resistome, and Mobilome to a Decade of Annual Exposure to Macrolide Antibiotics.” Applied and Environmental Microbiology 88, no. 8 (April 26, 2022): e0031622.

Subirats, Jessica, Roger Murray, Andrew Scott, Calvin Ho-Fung Lau, and Edward Topp. “Composting of Chicken Litter from Commercial Broiler Farms Reduces the Abundance of Viable Enteric Bacteria, Firmicutes, and Selected Antibiotic Resistance Genes.” Science of The Total Environment 746 (December 1, 2020): 141113.

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Yuan-Ching Tien, Robert D. Stedtfeld, and Edward Topp. “Impacts of Multi-Year Field Exposure of Agricultural Soil to Macrolide Antibiotics on the Abundance of Antibiotic Resistance Genes and Selected Mobile Genetic Elements.” Science of The Total Environment 727 (July 20, 2020): 138520.

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Erica N. DeJong, Forest Dussault, Catherine Carrillo, Peter J. Stogios, Alexei Savchenko, and Edward Topp. “A Penicillin-Binding Protein That Can Promote Advanced-Generation Cephalosporin Resistance and Genome Adaptation in the Opportunistic Pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa.” International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents 55, no. 3 (March 1, 2020): 105896.

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, and Edward Topp. “Understanding the Proline-Centric Design of a Peptide-Mediated Macrolide Resistance Mechanism.” Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 62, no. 4 (March 27, 2018): e02618-17.

Agboh, Kelvin, Calvin H. F. Lau, Yvonne S. K. Khoo, Himansha Singh, Sagar Raturi, Asha V. Nair, Julie Howard, et al. “Powering the ABC Multidrug Exporter LmrA: How Nucleotides Embrace the Ion-Motive Force.” Science Advances 4, no. 9 (September 19, 2018).

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Bing Li, Tong Zhang, Yuan-Ching Tien, Andrew Scott, Roger Murray, Lyne Sabourin, David R. Lapen, Peter Duenk, and Edward Topp. “Impact of Pre-Application Treatment on Municipal Sludge Composition, Soil Dynamics of Antibiotic Resistance Genes, and Abundance of Antibiotic-Resistance Genes on Vegetables at Harvest.” Science of The Total Environment 587 (June 1, 2017): 214–22.

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Kalene van Engelen, Stephen Gordon, Justin Renaud, and Edward Topp. “Novel Antibiotic Resistance Determinants from Agricultural Soil Exposed to Antibiotics Widely Used in Human Medicine and Animal Farming.” Applied and Environmental Microbiology 83, no. 16 (August 15, 2017): e00989-17.

Poole, Keith, Christie Gilmour, Maya A. Farha, Erin Mullen, Calvin Ho-Fung Lau, and Eric D. Brown. “Potentiation of Aminoglycoside Activity in Pseudomonas aeruginosa by Targeting the AmgRS Envelope Stress-Responsive Two-Component System.” Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 60, no. 6 (June 1, 2016): 3509–18.

Poole, Keith, Calvin Ho-Fung Lau, Christie Gilmour, Youai Hao, and Joseph S. Lam. “Polymyxin Susceptibility in Pseudomonas aeruginosa Linked to the MexXY-OprM Multidrug Efflux System.” Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 59, no. 12 (December 1, 2015): 7276–89.

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Thomas Krahn, Christie Gilmour, Erin Mullen, and Keith Poole. “AmgRS-Mediated Envelope Stress-Inducible Expression of the MexXY Multidrug Efflux Operon of Pseudomonas aeruginosa.” MicrobiologyOpen 4, no. 1 (February 1, 2015): 121–35.

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Daniel Hughes, and Keith Poole. “MexY-Promoted Aminoglycoside Resistance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa: Involvement of a Putative Proximal Binding Pocket in Aminoglycoside Recognition.” MBio 5, no. 2 (May 1, 2014): e01068-14.

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Sebastien Fraud, Marcus Jones, Scott N. Peterson, and Keith Poole. “Mutational Activation of the AmgRS Two-Component System in Aminoglycoside-Resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa.” Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 57, no. 5 (May 1, 2013): 2243–51.

Hay, Thomas, Sebastien Fraud, Calvin Ho-Fung Lau, Christie Gilmour, and Keith Poole. “Antibiotic Inducibility of the MexXY Multidrug Efflux Operon of Pseudomonas aeruginosa: Involvement of the MexZ Anti-Repressor ArmZ.” PLoS ONE 8, no. 2 (February 18, 2013).

Lau, Calvin Ho-Fung, Sebastien Fraud, Marcus Jones, Scott N. Peterson, and Keith Poole. “Reduced Expression of the RplU-RpmA Ribosomal Protein Operon in MexXY-Expressing Pan-Aminoglycoside-Resistant Mutants of Pseudomonas aeruginosa.” Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 56, no. 10 (October 1, 2012): 5171–79.

Krahn, Thomas, Christie Gilmour, Justin Tilak, Sebastien Fraud, Nicholas Kerr, Calvin Ho-Fung Lau, and Keith Poole. “Determinants of Intrinsic Aminoglycoside Resistance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.” Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 56, no. 11 (November 1, 2012): 5591–5602.

Velamakanni, Saroj, Calvin H. F. Lau, Daniel A. P. Gutmann, Henrietta Venter, Nelson P. Barrera, Markus A. Seeger, Barbara Woebking, et al. “A Multidrug ABC Transporter with a Taste for Salt.” PLoS ONE 4, no. 7 (July 10, 2009).

Roberts, Eve A., Calvin H. F. Lau, Themis Reverbel da Silveira, and Suyun Yang. “Developmental Expression of Commd1 in the Liver of the Jackson Toxic Milk Mouse.” Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 363, no. 4 (November 30, 2007): 921–25.

Research facility

960 Carling Road
Ottawa, ON K1A0Z2


Member, American Society for Microbiology

Member, Canadian Society of Microbiologist