Infection and immunity
We address questions related to the origins and mechanisms of antibiotic resistance, disease epidemiology and evolution.
Research within the Infection and Immunity theme aims to address key questions pertaining to the role of microbes in a wide range of disease and environmental processes. This encompasses the study of important bacterial and fungal species, viruses, and eukaryotic parasites. Active projects include those focused on the molecular mechanisms underpinning microbial virulence and immune evasion, the origins and mechanisms of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), the adaptation of pathogens to hostile environments, host-microbe interactions, the epidemiology and evolution of disease-causing microbes, and the biotechnological or pharmaceutical applications of microbes and their products. This gives our work direct relevance to major global challenges and initiatives in areas such as public health, food security, animal welfare, and the One Health framework. Many projects we undertake are focused on developing novel solutions to critical problems in these areas. Research areas include:
- Antimicrobial resistance (AMR)
- Bacterial and fungal pathogenesis and virulence factors
- Immune evasion and host responses
- Vaccine development
- Host behaviour and disease transmission
- Molecular epidemiology and evolutionary genomics
- Microbial stress responses and signal transduction
- Non-coding RNAs and fine-tuning of bacterial physiology
- Microbial ecology
- Biogeography of pathogenic fungi
- Bacterial biofilms and microbiomes.
- Molecular genetic basis of helminth parasitism
To achieve our aims, we exploit a wide range of molecular, biochemical, structural, and 'omics' techniques. Research within the group draws upon particular strengths in molecular microbiology, microbial genomics, transcriptomics, bioinformatics, and models of infection. This allows us to couple cutting-edge experimental work with powerful sequence based 'omics' and informatics approaches to provide significant new insights into microbial processes. We also work closely with a wide range of academic, clinical, government, and industry partners to ensure our research will have maximum benefit and impact.
Outreach and public engagement
Members of our theme are active in public engagement with science and outreach events. We are often present at local and regional science festivals, such as Festival of Nature and Bath Taps into Science, participate in school visits, and contribute to television or radio interviews on current topics in infection and immunity.
There are opportunities for postgraduate research throughout our group. Interested students are encouraged to contact academic staff directly or check our PhD projects on FindAPhD.com.