Translational Infection Biology

Bacterial communities

Microbial communities have an unparalleled impact on ecological stability, moderating the environment for every other living organism. These communities, or microbiota, are made up of diverse bacteria, archaea, fungi and viruses, with each particular mix unique to its own biological niche. The total genetic make up of each community is called its microbiome.

Metagenomics is the analysis of these microbiomes and it’s commonly used to reveal symbiotic relationships within them, as well as bacteria disrupting the equilibrium or helping to develop disease. Additionally, metatranscriptomics allows the analysis of host/pathogen interactions in vitro and in vivo.

Here in the Translational Infection Biology Research Group, we use a whole range of metagenomics-based analyses to describe the complex interplay between microbiota and their hosts. It’s a field of study that’s making a powerful impact on the health of people and animals, worldwide. 

Far-reaching health impacts

Together, our research team is using metagenomics to assess changes in antimicrobial resistance and gene expression in the microbiota of farm animals and their environment, informing the development of new drugs and treatment pathways.

We’re also investigating population diversity, changes and the interactions that lead to disease, identifying targets within poly-microbial systems so that specific novel therapeutic and vaccination strategies can be developed to combat them.

Specialist research areas

We’re using amplicon based sequencing, metagenomics and clade specific marker analysis to study bacterial populations, whole-genome sequencing to pinpoint microbiome diversity more precisely than ever, and meta-transcriptomics (mRNA sequencing) to explore interactions and co-regulation of gene expression between microbiota and host. 

Our team is applying this advanced analysis across a wide range of projects, including:

  • Host microbial interactions in ovine foot rot
  • Antimicrobial resistance gene diversity in microbial populations on ovine feet
  • The impact of genetic background on the gastrointestinal and skin health of fish
  • The impact of diet on the faecal microbiome and health of snow leopards

Funding and collaboration

We work with leading experts from a wide range of organisations, as well as a diverse mix of funding bodies.


Publications in this field

Our team regularly publishes papers on bacterial communities in a whole range of respected journals. 

Meet our research team

Our research team

Find out more about our staff and their fields of speciality

Postgraduate opportunities

Study with us

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Translational Infection Biology

The University of Nottingham
School of Veterinary Medicine and Sciences
Sutton Bonington Campus
Nottingham, LE12 5RD

Contact us:

Associate Professor Sabine Totemeyer

Dr Sharon Egan