Jacob Hamilton

Postgraduate Researcher Molecules from Nature

Jacob studies insect-bacteria symbiosis to try and find new antibiotics for use in humans.

Leafcutter ants farm a fungus for food, and their food fungus susceptible to disease. To protect it, the ants have co-evolved over millions of years to work with actinobacteria – which are responsible for 70% of our clinical antibiotics.

Jacob mines the genomes of these bacteria to find new antibiotics but also hopes to understand more about how the ant colony works but exploring the chemical interactions between the ants and bacteria.