A Royal Society University Fellowship “Investigating Photosynthetic Complexes” was awarded in late 2001. This was (gratefully) serially extended to 2012 due to medical circumstances (I have been 0.5/0.65 FTE since 2008). The Fellowship’s central remit was to probe more evolutionarily diverse organisms and mutants for light-harvesting photosynthetic proteins, and to drive forward a combinatorial approach of TEM and computer purification to overcome the structural heterogeneity that is often observed in light-sensitive samples. Separate structural breakthroughs were made for proteins involved in bacterial pathogenesis, PspA, and for antibiotic resistance, the emrAB complex. Photosystem assembly (Ycf4 protein; ref: The Plant Cell, 2009) and red algal light harvesting (Lhcr proteins) were also reported upon. X-ray diffraction was used to probe a cyanobacterial light-harvesting protein, subsequently elucidated to a resolution of 1.45 Å in 2003 (the most highly resolved light harvesting protein; for two years). Other projects used Atomic Force Microscopy to investigate molecular dynamics within membranes. I have contributed/designed to 7 invited front covers of books and journals.
During the earliest stages of my career, the first ever membrane-bound “photosynthetic supercomplex” was isolated whilst in the laboratory of Professor James Barber at Imperial College (PNAS, 1995). This has opened up a large field of international investigation. At that time I probed it with 14 biochemical/biophysical techniques to gain a Ph.D., followed by TEM during two post-doctoral positions (refs: Nature/Nature Structural Biology). The use of vitrified samples permitted 3D structures to be calculated from a number of organisms (cyanobacteria, green algae and a diverse range of niche organisms and their mutants) by single particle image analysis (17-20 Å resolution).
The lab engages in many national/international collaborations with emphasis now on the mechanisms and complexes that assemble, repair and regulate these membrane proteins in the first instance, including the first 3D reconstruction of the PSII-affecting protease FtsH (ref: The Plant Cell, 2012). Visiting researchers and/or Ph.D. students are welcome to contact the lab.
I referee publications for many journals, both specialist and well known, for the scientific community. I was an Associate Editor of Photochemical & Photobiological Sciences (2005-2009; www.rsc.org/pps). I have aided in the revision of the IBID (Biology) 3rd ed. textbook for the International Baccalaureate (2014). He has been, concurrently, Staff Representative on Faculty and GM-safety committees, as well as organising a seminar series (26 lectures in 18 months). He has sat on a Departmental IT provision committee.
Funding has been from The Royal Society, BBSRC/UK government and Japan's JST/CREST initiative, for which I am very grateful.
All original scientific content within this website is copyright of myself, the relevant authors, institutions and/or the journals that it is published in, as indicated.