Prof Mark Buttner

Head of Department
Molecular Microbiology

Research in our lab focusses on the cell biological processes underpinning Streptomyces sporulation, the master regulators that control these processes, and the regulatory networks that link the two. 

Our approach exploits a broad range of disciplines including cell biology, modelling, global ‘omics’ methods, genetics and biochemistry, right through to X-ray crystallography. As part of our work, we have recently pioneered the development of Streptomyces venezuelae as a new model system for the genus. Unlike most Streptomyces species, S. venezuelae sporulates in liquid culture, giving us a unique opportunity to follow the movement of multiple developmental proteins in time and space during differentiation using time-lapse imaging (movies). Sporulation in liquid culture also allows us to optimally apply global approaches like microarray transcriptional profiling and ChIP-seq to the analysis of cellular differentiation. 

In addition to our developmental research, we also investigate the molecular mechanisms that mediate oxidative and cell envelope stress responses in Streptomyces, and those involved in the control of antibiotic resistance, focussing on key components of each signal transduction pathway.

New book profiles Professor Sir David Hopwood's remarkable career

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Sporulation mystery solved

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Recent Publications

Schafer M., Stevenson C. E. M., Wilkinson B., Lawson D. M., Buttner M. J. (2016)

Substrate-assisted catalysis in polyketide reduction proceeds via a phenolate intermediate

Cell Chemical Biology 23 p1091-7

Publisher’s version: 10.1016/j.chembiol.2016.07.018

Schlimpert S., Flaerdh K., Buttner M. J. (2016)

Fluorescence time-lapse imaging of the complete Streptomyces life cycle using a microfluidic device

Journal of Visualized Experiments 108 pe53863

Publisher’s version: 10.3791/53863

Bush M. J., Tschowri N., Schlimpert S., Flärdh K., Buttner M. J. (2015)

c-di-GMP signalling and the regulation of developmental transitions in streptomycetes

Schafer M., Le T. B., Hearnshaw S. J., Maxwell A., Challis G. L., Wilkinson B., Buttner M. J. (2015)

SimC7 is a novel NAD(P)H-dependent ketoreductase essential for the antibiotic activity of the DNA gyrase inhibitor simocyclinone.

Journal of Molecular Biology 427 p2192-2204

Publisher’s version: 10.1016/j.jmb.2015.03.019

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Mark Buttner

  • Dr Matt Bush Research Assistant
  • Dr Morgan Feeney Postdoctoral Scientist
  • Martin Schafer Postgraduate Student
  • Dr Susan Schlimpert Research Fellow
  • Kelley Gallagher Postdoctoral Scientist


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