Colleges, School and Institutes
Willingness to take PhD students
Luke Alderwick’s many research interests revolve around understanding the biochemistry and molecular genetics of cell wall assembly in Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which is the causative bacterial agent of TB infections.
Aspects of mycobacterial cell wall biosynthesis remain fragmented, particularly those associated with mechanisms of peptidoglycan (PG) biosynthesis and how the cell wall is 'stitched' together. A broad aim of Dr Alderwick’s research involves understanding the mechanisms of mycobacterial PG biosynthesis and how this crucial cell wall structure is recycled during dormancy. Furthermore, he is also interested in how large polysaccharide structures are translocated and covalently attached to the mycobacterial cell wall. Biochemical and structural analysis of these crucial enzymes will shed new light on how mycobacteria assembles its murein sacculus. It will also provide invaluable information regarding subtle alterations that are present in mycobacterial PG, which could reveal potential mechanisms for inhibition and the eventual pursuit of new therapies targeted towards dormant TB infection.