Chinyere Okoro

Dr Chinyere Okoro

Lecturer in Bacteriology
PhD, MSc, BSc
+44 (0)1483 684487
9:00am - 5:00pm. By appointment



Chinyere graduated with a degree in industrial microbiology in Nigeria, followed by an MSc in industrial and commercial biotechnology from Newcastle University, UK in 2007, where her research project focussed on using a range of genotypic and phenotypic approaches to characterise novel actinomycetes whilst highlighting potential bioactivity in recovered isolates.

In 2012, she obtained a PhD in molecular biology from Corpus Christi College, University of Cambridge, enabled by a four-year Wellcome Trust PhD studentship and was based at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Cambridge, UK. During her PhD research, she used a combination of genomic and phenotyping methods to investigate the genotype to phenotype links in human-invasive variants of Salmonella Typhimurium.

She was awarded a Society-in Science, Branco Weiss Fellowship in 2013. Chinyere extended her previous research and developed her current research firstly, as a postdoctoral fellow at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (2012-2014) and then as a Research Associate at the Department of Medicine, University of Cambridge (2015-2017).

Chinyere joined the University of Surrey in February 2017

Research interests

Our lab research broadly aims to use best-fit methods to study the epidemiology of and identify variation in important enteric pathogen populations in order understand the contributory role of the identified variation in disease transmission.

My previous research focused on using whole genome sequencing and phylogenetic methods to determine the population structure and transmission dynamics of human-invasive variants of Salmonella Typhimurium from several countries in sub-Saharan Africa. We also used various in-vitro and ex-vivo assays to characterise identified phylogenetic lineages and ascertain distinguishing phenotypes.

Currently we are investigating the prevalence and transmission dynamics of clinically-important drug resistant enteric bacteria, including Klebsiella, E. coli, & non-typhoidal Salmonella serovars, in a community setting in Western Nigeria. We will use genome-based analyses and various phenotyping assays to study variation, such as antimicrobial resistance, within and between identified bacterial pathogen populations.

Research collaborations

  • Prof Iruka Okeke - University of Ibadan Nigeria & Haverford College, US
  • Prof Oladipo Aboderin - Obafemi Awolowo University Ife, Nigeria


  • Society in Science
  • Member - Microbiological Society
  • Member - American Society for Microbiology
  • Member - Royal Society of Biology

Courses I teach on


Postgraduate taught

My publications


Chattaway MA, Aboderin AO, Fashae K, Okoro CK, Opintan JA, Okeke IN. (2016). Fluoroquinolone-Resistant Enteric Bacteria in Sub-Saharan Africa: Clones, Implications and Research Needs.
Kariuki S, Okoro C, Kiiru J, Njoroge S, Omuse G, Langridge G, Kingsley RA, Dougan G, Revathi G. (2015). Ceftriaxone-resistant Salmonella enterica serotype typhimurium sequence type 313 from Kenyan patients is associated with the blaCTX-M-15 gene on a novel IncHI2 plasmid
Onsare RS, Micoli F, Lanzilao L, Alfini R, Okoro CK, Muigai AW, Revathi G, Saul A, Kariuki S, MacLennan CA, Rondini S (2015). Relationship between antibody susceptibility and lipopolysaccharide O-antigen characteristics of invasive and gastrointestinal nontyphoidal Salmonellae isolates from Kenya.
Okoro CK, Kingsley RA, Quail MA, Kankwatira AM, Feasey NA, Parkhill J, Dougan G, Gordon MA. (2012). High-resolution single nucleotide polymorphism analysis distinguishes recrudescence and reinfection in recurrent invasive nontyphoidal Salmonella typhimurium disease
Okoro CK, Barquist L, Connor TR, Harris SR, Clare S, Stevens MP, Arends MJ, Hale C, Kane L, Pickard DJ, Hill J, Harcourt K, Parkhill J, Dougan G, Kingsley RA. (2015). Signatures of adaptation in human invasive Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 populations from sub-Saharan Africa.
Carden S, Okoro C, Dougan G, Monack D. (2015). Non-typhoidal Salmonella Typhimurium ST313 isolates that cause bacteremia in humans stimulate less inflammasome activation than ST19 isolates associated with gastroenteritis
Seth-Smith HM, Fookes MC, Okoro CK, Baker S, Harris SR, Scott P, Pickard D, Quail MA, Churcher C, Sanders M, Harmse J, Dougan G, Parkhill J, Thomson NR. (2012). Structure, diversity, and mobility of the Salmonella pathogenicity island 7 family of integrative and conjugative elements within Enterobacteriaceae.
Okoro CK, Kingsley RA, Connor TR, Harris SR, Parry CM, Al-Mashhadani MN, Kariuki S, Msefula CL, Gordon MA, de Pinna E, Wain J, Heyderman RS, Obaro S, Alonso PL, Mandomando I, MacLennan CA, Tapia MD, Levine MM, Tennant SM, Parkhill J, Dougan G. (2012). Intracontinental spread of human invasive Salmonella Typhimurium pathovariants in sub-Saharan Africa
Okoro CK, Brown R, Jones AL, Andrews BA, Asenjo JA, Goodfellow M, Bull AT. (2009). Diversity of culturable actinomycetes in hyper-arid soils of the Atacama Desert, Chile.
Santhanam R, Okoro CK, Rong X, Huang Y, Bull AT, Weon HY, Andrews BA, Asenjo JA, Goodfellow M. (2012). Streptomyces atacamensis sp. nov., isolated from an extreme hyper-arid soil of the Atacama Desert, Chile
Okoro CK, Bull AT, Mutreja A, Rong X, Huang Y, Goodfellow M. (2010). Lechevalieria atacamensis sp. nov., Lechevalieria deserti sp. nov. and Lechevalieria roselyniae sp. nov., isolated from hyperarid soils.
Santhanam R, Okoro CK, Rong X, Huang Y, Bull AT, Andrews BA, Asenjo JA, Weon HY, Goodfellow M. (2012). Streptomyces deserti sp. nov., isolated from hyper-arid Atacama Desert soil.
Rateb ME, Houssen WE, Arnold M, Abdelrahman MH, Deng H, Harrison WT, Okoro CK, Asenjo JA, Andrews BA, Ferguson G, Bull AT, Goodfellow M, Ebel R, Jaspars M. (2011). Chaxamycins A-D, bioactive ansamycins from a hyper-arid desert Streptomyces sp.
Rateb ME, Houssen WE, Harrison WT, Deng H, Okoro CK, Asenjo JA, Andrews BA, Bull AT, Goodfellow M, Ebel R, Jaspars M. (2011). Diverse metabolic profiles of a Streptomyces strain isolated from a hyper-arid environment.
International Glossina Genome Initiative (2014). Genome sequence of the tsetse fly (Glossina morsitans): vector of African trypanosomiasis.
Fuzi M and Ip M (eds) (2017). The global challenge posed by the multiresistant international clones of bacterial pathogens
Harris SR & Okoro CK in Goodfellow M, Sutcliffe I, Chun J (eds) (2014). New Approaches to Prokaryotic Systematics
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