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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

Mick Tuite is currently the Professor of Molecular Biology and Head of School for the School of Biosciences.  He began his research career in the Botany School (now Plant Sciences) at the University of Oxford where he studied the non-Mendelian genetic determinant [PSI+] under the guidance of Dr Brian Cox, the discoverer of [PSI+]. Subsequently, Mick continued biochemical studies of the [PSI+] determinant as a postdoctoral researcher in the laboratory of Cal McLaughlin at the University of California at Irvine (UCI). Here he demonstrated, using a yeast in vitro translation system, the role of a ribosome-associated factor (which we now know to be the Sup35p termination factor) in the [PSI+] phenomenon. Following a further two years as a postdoctoral researcher in the laboratory of Alan Kingsman in the Department of Biochemistry in Oxford (where he helped develop one of the first yeast expression systems for high value biopharmaceuticals), he started his own group at Kent in 1983. Since then, he has moved his research focus from a biochemical/genetic study of the translation termination machinery in yeast, to the study of the [PSI+] prion and the role of molecular chaperones in maintaining this epigenetic state. Using a wide range of genetic, molecular and biochemical techniques his research group have made a number of significant contributions to yeast prion research and published over 200 research articles and reviews and edited six books. He is also a co-inventor of a patent that covers technology for the improved folding of recombinant proteins in yeast and other eukaryotic cells, technology that is already being exploited by industry.




Visit Mick's page on the University of Kent website

Lab members

Gemma Staniforth - Post Doc

Education and Employment


I completed a BSc (Hons) in Biotechnology at the University of Aberdeen in 2006, and during this degree also spent one year in industry (Pfizer Ltd., Kent) working on the development of methods for the quantification of low abundance peptides in human serum. I relocated to Kent to start a PhD in Professor Tuite's lab, investigating the sequence polymorphism, function and toxicity of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rnq1 prion protein. In 2011, I began a post-doctoral position within Professor Tuite's lab, investigating both the mechanism by which oxidative stress induces the de novo formation of yeast prions, and the effects of oxidiative stress on the misfolding propensity of amyloidogenic proteins. In 2015, I started a second post-doc position, which seeks to quantitatively analyse the operation and control of oxidative protein folding in the yeast endoplasmic reticulum. Generally, my interests include prion biology, genetic modifiers of amyloidogenic proteins, neurodegenerative diseases, ageing, protein translation, mitochondrial health, central metabolism, and creating protein interaction networks.​ In addition, I am studying the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) course part-time.

Research Project


Quantitative analysis of the operation and control of oxidative protein folding in the yeast endoplasmic reticulum.

Dave Beal - Post Doc

Education and Employment

  • 1997-2002, BSc (Hons) Chemistry, University of Greenwich

  • 1997-2011, Pfizer Global Research and Development. ​Discovery Chemistry – synthesis of small molecules for projects in multiple therapeutic areas from lead discovery to candidate seeking. Chemical Biology – use of small molecule probes to investigate interaction of drug-like compounds with proteins. The production of synthetic immunogens, for use in the generation of therapeutic antibodies, via the conjugation of peptides and small molecules to immunogenic proteins such as BSA and KLH.

  • 2011-2015,  BBSRC funded PhD, University of Kent

  • 2015 - present, BBSRC funded Post-Doctoral Researcher, University of Kent


Research Project​


Quantitative analysis of the operation and control of oxidative protein folding in the yeast endoplasmic reticulum.

Andrew Strange - MSc Student


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Dr. Jennifer Tullet

Dr. Dan Mulvihill

Dr. Chieh Hsu

Prof. Fritz Muhlschlegel

Prof. Peter Jeffries


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