Prof. Chris Thomas – Scientific Director

Prof. Chris Thomas

Christopher Thomas is Professor of Molecular Genetics, School of Biological Sciences, University of Birmingham. After a BA in Biochemistry (Oxford, 1974) and a DPhil in Microbiology (Oxford, 1977), Chris joined the Biology Department at UC San Diego, before returning to Birmingham as a Lecturer in Genetics in 1980. In 1987 he became a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Genetics, later becoming a Reader in Molecular Genetics in the same Department. In 1991, Chris was made Professor of Molecular Genetics at the School of Biological Sciences, is extensively published in the field of genetics and is one of the most highly cited authors on bacterial plasmids. Chris has been responsible for the supervision of Ph.D students since 1980, was a Member of Committee of the Genetical Society 1984-1990, an Elected member of SGM Council 1997-2000, a Member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of General Microbiology from 1988-1991, an Editor of Microbiology (formerly Journal of General Microbiology) from 1991-1997, Editor in Chief, Microbiology 2000-2005, a Member of Forum Panel, Trends in Biotechnology (Elsevier) 1994-2000 and has been on the Editorial Board of Journal of Biotechnology (Elsevier) since 1995. Chris is an active researcher, with a special interest in the study of bacterial plasmids, on which he is a leading authority.


Dr Tony Haines – Scientist

Dr Tony Haines

Tony Haines is a molecular geneticist and an experienced researcher in the bacterial plasmid field. After a first degree in Genetics at the University of Sheffield (1996), he moved to the School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, where he carried out research with Professor Christopher Thomas, on the active partitioning of the IncP-1 plasmids RK2 and R751. He received a Ph.D for this research in 2001. Tony then became a Research Fellow in the same department, continuing his research on bacterial plasmids. During this time he worked on the sequencing and annotation of plasmid genomes from Pseudomonas spp. Tony joined Plasgene is 2006 and brings a wealth of experimental and theoretical experience to the team.


Dr Jon Hobman – Scientist

Dr Jon Hobman

Jon Hobman is an internationally recognised research scientist, with an extensive knowledge of molecular microbiology and molecular genetics. He has more than 40 scientific publications to his name, including peer-reviewed journals, book chapters and patents.  His research experience in the field of microbiology include bacterial metal-ion stress, plasmid and transposon-borne metal-ion homeostasis and resistance systems and their regulation, transcriptomics in E.coli K-12 and O157:H7 and molecular microbial ecology of metal resistance genes.  Following a First Class (Honours) degree in Industrial Biology in 1988 at South Bank, with an industrial placement with the Celltech plc group of companies, Jon moved to the University of Liverpool, where he carried out research on the distribution and divergence of mercury resistance determinants in environmental bacteria, for which he was awarded a Ph.D (1992). Jon moved to the University of Birmingham in 1992 as a post-doctoral fellow, becoming a senior research fellow in 2000 and holding posts as a lecturer to undergraduate and postgraduate students in the School of Biosciences and as a Ph.D supervisor. He has substantial international collaborative experience and has led and raised funding for a number of important research initiatives in his field. Jon joined Plasgene in 2006 and brings substantial knowledge and experience to the team. In 2007 Jon moved to the University of Nottingham as Associate Professor of Microbiology.