Research in the Stevens Laboratory aims to improve food safety and enhance the health and welfare of farmed animals by defining the molecular basis of virulence of Salmonella, Campylobacter and enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli. These agents collectively caused 76,377 laboratory-confirmed cases of acute diarrhoeal illness in humans in the UK in 2009 and infections may be complicated by life-threatening sequelae depending on strain- and host-specific factors.
Such infections are frequently acquired via the food chain and environment from farm animals. Control of the agents in reservoir hosts is expected to limit the incidence of human disease.
Toward this aim, a mix of fundamental, strategic and applied projects exploit knowledge of the role of bacterial and host factors in pathogenesis to develop and evaluate methods of disease control. Research is conducted at all levels from molecules to target animals and provides insights that cannot be obtained in surrogate rodent- or cell-based assays. Award-winning work to reduce, refine or replace animals in research is also performed.
Knowledge accumulated in the study of food borne pathogens is being exploited to unravel the pathogenesis of other animal diseases, including avian colibacillosis and melioidosis.
Zoonoses Report from Defra
Roy R Chaudhuri, Eirwen Morgan, Sarah E Peters, Stephen J Pleasance, Debra L Hudson, Holly M Davies, Jinhong Wang, Pauline M van Diemen, Anthony M Buckley, Alison J Bowen, Gillian D Pullinger, Daniel J Turner, Gemma C Langridge, A Keith Turner, Julian Parkhill, Ian G Charles, Duncan J Maskell, Mark P Stevens. 2013. Comprehensive Assignment of Roles for Salmonella Typhimurium Genes in Intestinal Colonization of Food-Producing Animals. PLoS Genetics Vol: 9. More»
Francis Dziva, Heidi Hauser, Thomas R Connor, Pauline M van Diemen, Graham Prescott, Gemma C Langridge, Sabine Eckert, Roy R Chaudhuri, Christa Ewers, Melha Mellata, Suman Mukhopadhyay, Roy Curtiss, Gordon Dougan, Lothar H Wieler, Nicholas R Thomson, Derek J Pickard, Mark P Stevens. 2013. Sequencing and functional annotation of avian pathogenic Escherichia coli serogroup O78 strains reveals the evolution of E. coli lineages pathogenic for poultry via distinct mechanisms. Infection and Immunity Vol: 81 Pages: 838-849. More»
Gillian D. Pullinger, Sonya C. Carnell, Fathima F. Sharaff, Pauline M. van Diemen, Francis Dziva, Eirwen Morgan, Mark Lyte, Primrose P. E. Freestone, Mark P. Stevens. 2010. Norepinephrine Augments Salmonella enterica-Induced Enteritis in a Manner Associated with Increased Net Replication but Independent of the Putative Adrenergic Sensor Kinases QseC and QseE. Infection and Immunity Vol: 78 Pages: 372-380. More»
Sabine E. Eckert, Francis Dziva, Roy R. Chaudhuri, Gemma C. Langridge, Daniel J. Turner, Derek J. Pickard, Duncan J. Maskell, Nicholas R. Thomson, Mark P. Stevens. 2011. Retrospective application of transposon-directed insertion site sequencing to a library of signature-tagged mini-Tn5Km2 mutants of Escherichia coli O157:H7 screened in cattle. Journal of Bacteriology Vol: 193 Pages: 1771-1776. More»
A. M. Buckley, J. Wang, D. L. Hudson, A. J. Grant, M. A. Jones, D. J. Maskell, M. P. Stevens. 2010. Evaluation of live-attenuated Salmonella vaccines expressing Campylobacter antigens for control of C. jejuni in poultry. Vaccine Vol: 28 Pages: 1094-1105. More»