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Professor Alex O'Neill

Professor of Antimicrobial Research
Areas of expertise
) antibiotics; antibacterial drug discovery; natural products; mode of action; antimicrobial resistance (AMR)
8.52c Garstang
Biological Sciences
Molecular and Cellular Biology


Antibiotics enable the treatment and cure of life-threatening bacterial infections, and represent one of the great successes of modern medicine. Unfortunately, the utility of these agents is being dramatically eroded as bacteria evolve to resist their effects.
My laboratory seeks to better understand and address this problem through a combination of fundamental and applied research. Whilst our core expertise is molecular microbiology, we favour a multi-disciplinary approach that involves working closely with medicinal chemists, structural biologists and clinical scientists.

Current major projects

  • Discovery and characterization of novel antibacterial drug candidates from natural and synthetic sources
  • New tools to enable antibiotic discovery
  • Understanding how antibiotics enter bacteria
  • Dissecting the molecular detail of antibiotic resistance mechanisms