Microbial Science

Contrary to common perception and their ancient origin, microbes represent the most highly evolved living creatures on earth. As Steven Jay Gould pointed out, this has been and always will be the age of the microbe. Studies on how microbes function have opened up fundamental insights into how living systems operate and continue to do so.

Of course our major concerns are how microbes impinge on humans by causing disease, degrading our products, participating in geochemical processes and get deployed in our industries. Infectious diseases present a huge economic burden in Europe and, worldwide, kill millions every year. The short generation time and capacity for recombination of microbes, which has underpinned their exceptional evolutionary sophistication, highlights the challenge they pose in adapting to resist our treatments and their continual modifications which can lead to new diseases.

Picture of laboratory a Picture of a laboratory b

Leicester has a strong tradition in microbial sciences; ground-breaking work in biological classification was undertaken by our foundation professor, Peter Sneath FRS, and the 1980s saw a burgeoning of molecular microbiology, particularly focussed on pathogenesis.

The Microbial Sciences Theme includes academics whose primary focus is on microbes or on infection and continues to encompass both fundamental and applied studies. We have recently gathered further strength through a convergence of our activities into sub-themes.  There has been a significant uplift in translational work including vaccine, treatment and diagnostic developments.

For further information, please contact: Dr Julie Morrissey, Theme Lead, Department of Genetics, 0116 252 2272, jam26@le.ac.uk. Alternatively please contact Prof Marco Oggioni, Joint Theme Lead, mro5@le.ac.uk, 0116 252 2261.

Alternativley contact Lisa Witherington, Microbial Theme Administrator, College Research & Enterprise Office (CREO), University of Leicester.
Tel: 0116 2297160 Email: lmb24@le.ac.uk
To find out more information about Lisa & CREO please click here.

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Contact Details

College of Life Sciences
University of Leicester
Maurice Shock Building
University Road