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|2014 - present||CNAP Director||Centre for Novel Agricultural Products (CNAP), Department of Biology, University of York|
|2001 - 2013||Chair in Materials Biology||Centre for Novel Agricultural Products, Department of Biology, University of York|
|1994 - 2002||Royal Society University Research Fellow||Department of Biology, University of York|
|1993 - 1994||Post-doctoral Research Assistant||The Pennsylvania State University|
|1993||PhD (Plant Physiology)||The Pennsylvania State University|
|1987||BSc Biology (CNAA) Honours (1st Class)||Portsmouth Polytechnic School of Biological Sciences|
Research encompasses various aspects of plant cell wall biology. The cell wall plays a key role in the control of plant growth and morphogenesis by regulating the rates of cell expansion through changes in extensibility. Plant cell wall extensibility is under dynamic control and the molecular mechanisms underlying extension are a major research interest. Expansins are key proteins that regulate cell wall extensibility and we study these proteins at the level of biochemistry and molecular genetics. The cell wall is a complex fibre composite material composed of a range of different polysaccharides. We study the contribution of different matrix polysaccharides to cell wall extensibility and elasticity, as well as the genes and enzymes involved in their biosynthesis.
Plant biomass is one of the greatest reserves of fixed carbon on the planet, is viewed as a potential replacement for fossil fuels, and is largely composed of cell walls. We are using our knowledge of cell walls to advance the development of second generation liquid biofuels from plant biomass in three distinct areas. Firstly, we are coordinating a large international project, which aims to optimise plant cell walls for biofuel applications by making them more readily converted into fermentable sugars for alcohol production. Secondly, we have initiated a major programme for the discovery of novel enzymes for converting plant biomass into fermentable sugars. Finally, we are investigating the production of liquid biofuels from plant biomass from municipal waste.
|Research Team Leader||Dr. Leonardo Gomez||
Mulitpurpose hemp for industrial bioproducts and biomass.
|LBNet Manager||Dr. Veronica Ongaro||LBNet|
|Technical Specialist/Lab Manager||Dr Clare Steele-King||Learning from marine wood borers.|
|Post Doctoral Researcher||Dr. Katrin Besser||Learning from marine wood borers|
|Post Doctoral Researcher||Dr. Alexandra Lanot||Multipurpose hemp for industrial bioproducts and biomass.|
|Post Doctoral Researcher||Dr Federico Sabbadin||Learning from marine wood borers.|
|PhD student||Caragh Whitehead||Using QTL mapping of Brachypodium distachyon to understand the genetic basis of grass cell wall saccharification.|
|PhD student||Giovanna Pesante||Learning from marine woodborers.|
|PhD student||Lynda Sainty||
Anaerobic digestion of low-input upland grasslands.
|PhD student||Nurashikin Ihsan||Targeted analysis of lignocellulolytic secretomes-a new approach to enzyme discovery.|
|Senior Technician||Rachael Simister||Multipurpose hemp for industrial bioproducts and biomass.|
|Senior Technician||Luisa Elias||Learning from marine wood borers.|
|Research Administrator||Julia Crawford|