Infection and immunity research theme

Understanding microbes, host immunity and preventing the spread of infectious disease.

The challenge

Biosecurity is a global concern — infectious disease is estimated to cause a third of all human deaths worldwide. Better ways to empower the immune system to protect us from pathogens, but without triggering the inappropriate immune responses that cause illness, are continually needed. As microbes evolve and emerge from animal reservoirs to threaten our food supply and health, we need to develop new agents such as vaccines and antimicrobials and also understand how best to use them, including to avoid antimicrobial resistance.

Our response

Within the theme we take an interdisciplinary and one health approach to tackling these challenges. Investigations of host-pathogen interactions and of microbial structure and mechanisms, including at the quantum level, reveal target structures and pathways for blocking transmissible disease and enhancing antimicrobial penetration in humans and animals. Studies to elucidate immune system complexities inform better diagnosis and treatment of autoimmunity, inflammation and sepsis. Generating new data sets and applying computational techniques enables new ways to minimise the transmission of pathogens and to optimise antibiotic production from bacterial strains to be designed.

Research projects

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Timing, quality, and physiology of sleep in a deprived community cohort in South Africa, and their relationship with chronic disease

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Research theme members

NameRoleSchool
Ruth AlaitayoResearch Fellow in Tropical Animal Health and InnovationSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Nicola AnnelsResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Simon ArcherLecturer in Veterinary Clinical ResearchSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Bryony ArmsonResearch FellowSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Claudio Avignone RossaReader in Systems MicrobiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Ian BaileySenior Teaching FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Matteo BarberisReader in Systems BiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Shahriar BehboudiSenior Lecturer in Veterinary Immunology and VirologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Dany BesteLecturer in Microbial MetabolomicsSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Martha BetsonLecturer in Veterinary ParasitologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
David BlackbournHead of the School of Biosciences and MedicineSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Kikki Bodman-SmithSenior Teaching Fellow in ImmunologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Khushboo BorahResearch Fellow in Nutritional BiochemistrySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Emma BorkowskiTeaching Fellow In Anatomic PathologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Michele BrocardResearch Fellow in VirologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Nicola CareyReader in Long-term ConditionsSchool of Health Sciences
Mark ChambersProfessor of Veterinary BacteriologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Peter CockroftProfessor (Head of Veterinary Education)School of Veterinary Medicine
Alasdair CookHead of Department of Veterinary Epidemiology and Public HealthSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Guido CordoniResearch Fellow in Molecular MicrobiologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Ben Creagh-BrownReader (Clinical)School of Biosciences and Medicine
Simon de LusignanProfessor of Primary Care and Clinical Informatics, and Vice Chancellor's FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Deborah Dunn-WaltersProfessor of ImmunologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Bernadette EganSenior Research FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Abel EkiriResearch Fellow in Veterinary EpidemiologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Gillian ElliottProfessor of VirologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Isabella EndacottResearch AssistantSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Giuseppe FacchettiLecturer in Systems BiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Barbara FieldingReader in Nutritional SciencesSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Noel FitzpatrickProfessor of Veterinary OrthopaedicsSchool of Veterinary Medicine
André GerberProfessor of RNA BiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Maria GetinoResearch Fellow in MicrobiologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Helen GriffithsExecutive Dean of Faculty 
Jorge Gutierrez MerinoLecturer in Food MicrobiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Belinda HallResearch Fellow in the Pathogenesis of Buruli ulcerSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Joanna HarrisVeterinary Clinical Teaching FellowSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Sara HealyTeaching Fellow in Animal HusbandrySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Suzie Hingley-WlsonLecturer in BacteriologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Daniel HortonSenior Lecturer in Veterinary VirologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Louise Tzung-Harn HsiehResearch Fellow in Host-Pathogen InteractionsSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Jim HuggettSenior Lecturer in Analytical MicrobiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Valentina IadevaiaResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Jose JimenezSenior Lecturer in Synthetic BiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Roberto La RagioneProfessor in Veterinary Microbiology and PathologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Diane LeeResearch Fellow in Infectious DiseasesSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Joy LengResearch FellowSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Giovanni Lo IaconoLecturer in Biostatistics/EpidemiologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Nickolas LockerProfessor of VirologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Tanja MaehrResearch Fellow in Wildlife DiseaseSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Carlos Maluquer de MotesSenior Lecturer in Virus/Host InteractionsSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Kevin MaringerLecturer in MicrobiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Fernando Martinez EstradaLecturer in Innate ImmunologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Peter MayerhoferLecturer in Molecular ImmunologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Johnjoe McFaddenProfessor of Microbial GeneticsSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Jai MehatResearch Fellow in MicrobiologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Chinyere OkoroLecturer in BacteriologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Mark PallenVC FellowSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Sharmini ParamasivamTeaching FellowSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Joaquin PradaLecturer in Veterinary EpidemiologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Charles RaynerResearch Fellowship (Royal College of Surgeons)School of Biosciences and Medicine
Natalie RiddellLecturer in Immunology and AgeingSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Jennifer RitchieSenior Lecturer in Microbial PathogenesisSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Harry RobertsResearch Fellow in Cancer and ExerciseSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Margaret RobertsonReader in Nutritional PhysiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Tiffany RussellResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
David Russell-JonesVice-Chancellor's FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Jerzy SamolejResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Rachel SimmondsSenior Lecturer in ImmunopathogenesisSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Simon SkeneProfessor of Medical Statistics and Director of Surrey Clinical Trials UnitSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Kimberley SmithLecturer in Health PsychologySchool of Psychology
Falko SteinbachProfessor of Veterinary ImmunologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Alexander StewartResearch Fellow in ImmunologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Graham StewartProfessor of Molecular Bacteriology and Head of DepartmentSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Dona SubasingheTeaching Fellow in Small Animal PracticeSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Lada Timotijevic Principal Research FellowSchool of Psychology
Arnoud van VlietSenior Lecturer in MicrobiologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Johanna von GerichtenResearch Fellow in Nutritional MetabolismSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Kezia WhatleyResearch Fellow in Molecular ParasitologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Kayleigh WylesLecturer in Environmental PsychologySchool of Psychology

Research theme champions

Mark Chambers profile image

Professor Mark Chambers

Research Theme Champion

Emma Wise profile image

Dr Emma Wise

Associate Research Theme Champion

Contact us

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Address

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences
Kate Granger Building
30 Priestley Road, Surrey Research Park
Guildford
Surrey
GU2 7YH