Dr. Quave

Dr. Cassandra Quave in her laboratory at Emory University.

Access Dr. Quave’s Curriculum Vitae here.

Dr. Cassandra L. Quave is a medical ethnobotanist whose work is focused on the documentation and analysis of botanical remedies used in the treatment of infectious disease. Her expertise and interests include the traditional medical practices of the Mediterranean, and the botanical sources of anti-infectives and natural products for skin care. Dr. Quave is author of THE PLANT HUNTER: A SCIENTIST’S QUEST FOR NATURE’S NEXT MEDICINES with Viking Press. More information on her book and speaking tour can be found on her Author Website.

Dr. Quave holds a joint appointment as Associate Professor of Dermatology in the Emory University School of Medicine and Emory Center for the Study of Human Health, where she leads drug discovery research initiatives and teaches courses on medicinal plants, food and health. Dr. Quave also serves as Director/Curator of the Emory University Herbarium, and is associated faculty with the Departments of Biology, Environmental Sciences and Anthropology at Emory. She is a member of the Emory University Antibiotic Resistance Center and the Winship Cancer Center Discovery and Development Therapeutics Program. She also serves on the training faculty for the Antibiotic Resistance and Therapeutic Discovery Training Program, the Molecular and Systems Pharmacology Graduate Program and Microbiology and Molecular Genetics Graduate Program at Emory. Her work has been featured in a number of international outlets including the New York Times Magazine.

To date, she has published more than 100 scientific works, including two edited books and six patents.  Dr. Quave was recognized in the Emory University Alumni “40 Under Forty” recognition program in 2017, she is the recipient of the Phytoneering Award from Bionorica SE (2014), and Harvard Business School New Venture competition DC and NY winner, and global finalist (2011). Dr. Quave is a Fellow of the Explorers Club, a recipient of the Emory Williams Teaching Award and Charles Heiser, Jr. Mentor Award. She is the creator and host of Foodie Pharmacology, a podcast dedicated to exploring the links between food and medicine.

Dr. Quave’s research has been the subject of feature profiles in the New York Times Magazine, BBC Focus, Brigitte Magazin, National Geographic Magazine, NPR and the National Geographic Channel. She also regularly serves on grant review panels for the National Institutes of Health and is a Past President of the Society for Economic Botany.

In addition to her academic positions, Dr. Quave provides consulting services on botanicals for personal care, skin health and cosmetics as an independent consultant through CLQ Botanicals, LLC. Quave is also the co-founder and CEO/CSO of PhytoTEK LLC, a start-up biotech company dedicated to R&D and eventual commercialization of novel anti-infective technologies based on her US-issued patent for a botanical biofilm inhibitor.



Dr. Quave received her B.S. in Biology and B.S. in Anthropology and Human Biology from Emory University in 2000. After taking a few years off from school to travel and begin field research in Italy, she returned to academia to earn her PhD in Biology (with a focus on ethnobotany and natural products research) at Florida International University’s Center for Ethnobiology and Natural Products from 2003-2008 with Dr. Bradley C. Bennett. She received training as a post-doctoral fellow in microbial pathogenesis at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Department of Microbiology and Immunology from 2009-2011 with Dr. Mark S. Smeltzer. She completed a second post-doctoral fellowship from 2011-2012 with Dr. Michelle Lampl in the Center for the Study of Human Health at Emory University.


Photo: Dr. Quave in the mountains of NE Albania during a 2012 field study.