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KFG research groups

KFG research groups

Prof. Mick Tuite

Dr. Campbell Gourlay

Dr.Tobias von der Haar

Dr. Alessia Buscaino

Dr. Wei-Feng Xue

Dr. Jennifer Tullet

Dr. Dan Mulvihill

Lab members

​I joined the school of Biosciences in 2005. My lab studies the mechanism of mRNA translation, and how this is used as a control point for regulating gene expression. One of our main aims is to go away from the classical depiction of translation as a process that happens when one ribosome meets an mRNA, and instead to study it as a process resulting from 200,000 ribosomes acting on 15,000 mRNAs, as is the case in a typical baker’s yeast cell. We use wet lab experiments, data mining and computer models to study how the complex decoding system squares the opposing demands of efficiency and accuracy.


Research Career

2012-present                    Senior Lecturer in Systems Biology, University of Kent

2009-2012                          Lecturer in Systems Biology, University of Kent

2005-2009                          Wellcome Trust RCD Fellow, University of Kent

2004-2005                          Postdoctoral worker, University of Kent

1998-2004                          Postdoctoral Worker, UMIST, Manchester



Visit Tobias' lab pages​


Eleanna Kazana - Post Doc

Education and Employment


2014 - present, University of Kent, Postdoctoral Research Associate

Research Project


Tarun Singh - PhD student



2008 - 2011, Jaipur National University, BSc in Microbial Technology

2011 - 2012, University of Kent, MSc in Microbiology

2012 - present, University of Kent, PhD student

Research Project


The relationship between codon usage, protein expression levels, and selective pressure.The foundation of our study is the ability to qualitatively measure changes in selective pressure resulting from different codon usage. It has been predicted by Dr. Tobias von der Haar that negative selective pressure generated by optimal codons can be overcome if high expression of the encoded protein itself is under positive selective pressure. In order to test this idea directly we will generate variants for the yeast HIS3 gene. It will be explored how different combinations of positively and negatively selective elements effect net selective pressure.

Ronan Egan - PhD student


  • 2012-2015: The University of Northampton, BSc. (Hons) in Biochemistry

  • 2015-2019: The University of Kent, PhD. Synthetic Biology

Research Project

Developing oxygen-sensitive protein expression systems based on adaptive tools of anaerobic protozoa.

Iron-sulfur (FeS) clusters are essential co-factors for roughly 250 eukaryotic proteins. Despite this Fe-S centres are notoriously sensitive to oxidants (including molecular oxygen) severely limiting both their study and use in biotechnological applications. However, anaerobic protozoa have evolved tools to overcome these barriers. Together with the Tsaousis Laboratory of Molecular Parasitology, the Centre for Molecular Processing and the School of Chemistry at UEA. I am currently utilising these adaptations in order to develop strategies to heterologously express FeS proteins in the model eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae.


Chloe Pain - MSc-R student

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Dr. Chieh Hsu

Prof. Fritz Muhlschlegel

Prof. Peter Jeffries


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