My research interest focuses on microbial pathogenesis and antibiotic resistance; with specific interest in staphylococcal biofilm formation and its role in pathogenesis of biomaterial-related infections and nosocomial infections. I am a highly skilled researcher with excellent knowledge in Staphylococcus aureus and S. epidermidis adhesion and biofilm formation mechanisms. This involves studying the effect of relevant genes on the adhesion and biofilm formation of staphylococci to implant surfaces using various molecular biology techniques and whole genome sequencing. I am also competent in using confocal laser scanning microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscope, and immunolabelling techniques.  I help supervise both undergraduate and postgraduate students working on a variety of staphylococci and Campylobacter pathogenicity projects in collaboration with the Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board (ABMU), Public Health Wales, and AO Research Institute Davos, Switzerland.

I am/have been a co-applicant on a Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol PhD studentship, an MRC research grant and a InvestorG8 grant. I also manage the Microbiology and Infectious Diseases laboratory. I peer-review for several high impact journals and I am a member of the European Cells & Materials Journal’s International Editorial Review Board. I am a member of the Management Committee of COST Action TD1305, Improved Protection of Medical Devices Against Infection (IPROMEDAI). I am an active member of the Microbiology Society (formerly known as Society for General Microbiology), American Society of Microbiology, and the Society for Applied Microbiology.

Areas of Expertise

  • Staphylococcus
  • microbial pathogenesis
  • biofilm
  • microscopy
  • antimicrobial resistance
  • molecular biology
  • microbiology

Publications

  1. Characterization of nasal methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolated from international human and veterinary surgeons. Journal of Medical Microbiology 66(3), 360-370.
  2. & Biofilm Morphotypes and Population Structure among Staphylococcus epidermidis from Commensal and Clinical Samples. PLOS ONE 11(3), e0151240
  3. & Effects of polysaccharide intercellular adhesin (PIA) in an ex vivo model of whole blood killing and in prosthetic joint infection (PJI): A role for C5a. International Journal of Medical Microbiology 305(8), 948-956.
  4. et. al. Ecological overlap and horizontal gene transfer in Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis. Genome Biology and Evolution
  5. & Dormant Cells of Staphylococcus aureus Are Resuscitated by Spent Culture Supernatant. PLoS ONE 9(2), e85998

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Teaching

  • PM-004 Fundamentals of Microbiology & Disease

    This module will provide the student with an overview of the fundamentals of microbiology, its causative role in human disease and the intervention of antimicrobials and antibiotics. The role of immunity and its role in human defence against disease will also be introduced in this module, and how this may be modulated in response to pathogens. Lectures will be accompanied by a practical session in microbiological techniques and an essay with academic support. Mae'r modiwl yma yn rhoi trosolwg i fyfyrwyr o hanfodion mewn microbioleg, ei rôl achosol mewn afiechydon dynol ac ymyrraeth gwrthficrobaidd a gwrthfiotig. Caiff rôl imiwnedd a'i rôl mewn amddiffyn dyn yn erbyn afiechydon, a sut mae'n addasu mewn ymateb i bathogenau ei gyflwyno hefyd yn y modiwl yma. Caiff y darlithoedd eu cyfeilio gan sesiynau ymarferol mewn technegau microbiolegol a traethawd efo cefnogaeth academaidd.

  • PM-200 Genetic Analysis II

    This module will give assignments designed to build on essay writing and oral presentation skills introduced in level 1. It will also develop critical evaluation, analysis skills for the understanding of peer-reviewed research papers.

  • PM-250 Infectious Disease and Parasitology

    The course will build on the fundamentals of microbiology and introduce new topics in bacteriology, mycology and parasitology. Level 5 Immunology (PM-249) is a pre-requisite. The course covers the fundamentals of infectious diseases, including clinical aspects, treatment / prevention, and experimental approaches to the study of infectious and parasitic organisms. The course will also cover topics including disease outbreaks, beneficial parasites, tropical disease and behaviour-modifying parasites.

  • PM-304 Biomolecular Research Project

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  • PM-315 Genetic Analysis III

    The module aims to develop the student¿s ability to critically analyse and synthesise advanced research topics in genetics and molecular biology, and their oral and written scientific presentation skills.

Supervision

  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Angharad Davies
    Other supervisor: Dr Llinos Harris
    Other supervisor: Dr Thomas Wilkinson
    Other supervisor: Prof Thomas Humphrey