Professor Rob Field

Project Leader Molecules from Nature

Biography

Rob’s research focuses on carbohydrate chemistry and biochemistry.

He develops chemical probes and uses gene manipulation to impact carbohydrate biosynthesis and degradation pathways, thereby generating new products.

Rob’s research spans a broad range of organisms including plants, algae, bacteria and viruses. This work has resulted in a number of applications, from designer carbohydrates for functional food studies to developing diagnostics for infectious diseases.

  • Chemical and enzymatic synthesis
  • Small molecule probes
  • Glycobiology across a broad range of species

Carbohydrates play many and varied roles in biology, contributing as energy sources, structural materials, binding and signalling molecules.

In contrast to nucleic acids and proteins, carbohydrates are not template-encoded, which adds enormously to the diversity of carbohydrate structures that may be produced and imparts huge complexity to their analysis and definition of their biological function.

Research in the Field group is focused on developing and exploiting chemical tools and principles to address questions in plant and microbial carbohydrate metabolism.

Projects typically involve some combination of chemical and enzymatic synthesis, inhibitor design and assessment, biochemistry, structural biology, metabolomic, proteomic and transcriptomic analysis.

From a biology perspective, the lab work cross-Kingdom; Arabidopsis, Barley, Euglena, Streptomyces, E. coli, flu virus, the African and American trypanosome.

Selected Publications

See all of Professor Rob Field's publications

Opportunities

Informal enquiries welcome PhD positions in experimental and computational sciences for the Marie-Curie Innovative Training Network “PoLiMeR”