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Research group

Molecular and Precision Biosciences

A man in lab sitting in fromt of a computer.

We research how molecular machinery governs cellular life, developing tools to tackle diseases caused when these molecular operations are disrupted.


Molecular interactions amongst biomacromolecules such as proteins, nucleic acids (DNA and RNA), carbohydrates and lipids are responsible for nearly every task of life. This includes how genetic information is read, replicated, repaired, catalysing biochemical reactions and maintaining cell shape and communication. 

Our knowledge of what these interactions look like, how they lead to function, and when and where they are present is key to understanding biology. Just as importantly, as molecular bio-scientists we strive to improve detection and interrogation of these interactions at ever increasing precision; developing new technologies to understand biological questions in cancer, antimicrobial resistance, neurodegenerative disease, and vaccine development. 

Our theme is excitingly positioned at discipline boundaries, our members interfacing chemistry, physics, and or computational and AI technologies with biology to achieve more detailed, more precise, and increasingly impactful insights into the molecular machinery governing cellular life, and death.

Our areas of interest 

  • Systems Biomedicine
  • Structural Biology 
  • AI-guided Computational Biology
  • Glycobiology
  • Antibody Therapy
  • Antimicrobial Resistance & Biofilms
  • Neurodegenerative Disease & Cancer
  • Natural Product Biosynthesis
  • Cell Membranes

Research highlights

People, projects and publications


Dr Andrew Lawrence

Lecturer in in Biomedical Sciences

Research interests

  • Vitamin B12 metabolism
  • Biosynthesis of natural products

Accepting applications from PhD students

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Dr Benjamin Nicholas MSc PhD FHEA

Lecturer in Systems Biomedicine
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Dr Charlie Birts

Lecturer in Antibody Therapeutics

Research interests

  • Antibody Therapy
  • Metastic Breast Cancer
  • Obesity and Breast Cancer
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Dr Daniel Kaganovich

Associate Professor of Neurobiology
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Dr David Tumbarello

Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences

Research interests

  • Membrane Trafficking
  • Autophagy
  • Mitochondrial Quality Control

Accepting applications from PhD students

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Dr Eamonn Reading

Associate Professor-Molecular Bioscience

Research interests

  • Membrane proteins
  • Mass spectrometry
  • Multidrug efflux pumps
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Dr Emily Brookes

Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences

Research interests

  • Enhancer regulation of gene expression
  • Cortical development
  • Topological genome organisation

Accepting applications from PhD students

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Dr Fatima Pereira

Lecturer in Molecular and Cellular Biosc

Research interests

  • Gut microbiome
  • Host-microbiota crosstalk
  • Intestinal infection and colonisation resistance

Accepting applications from PhD students

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Dr Ivo Tews

Associate Professor

Research interests

  • Natural products biosynthesis: a complex cascade of catalytic steps in vitamin B6 biosynthesis is characterised by structures or reaction intermediates in the large PLP syntase complexEdit
  • Bacterial biofilms: understanding of RedOx regulated phosphodiesterase activity in dispersal of biofilms to address chronic infections
  • Cancer immunology: together with Cancer Immunology at Southampton we use a structure based apporach in developing novel cancer therapie
Connect with Ivo

Dr Joel Allen

Principal Research Fellow

Research interests

  • Mass spectrometry
  • Viral glycobiology
  • Immunogen design
Connect with Joel
We cannot detect the molecular workings of cellular life with the human eye. Within this theme we utilize and develop ways to view the invisible, in order to demystify the parts they play in health and disease.
Theme Lead