A biologist. This is a broad label that I’m happy to wear, even if I was a bit slow to realise it. I can’t claim to being a born naturalist, always on the hunt for beasties, but I do remember CFCs and ozone depletion having a big impact on me as a boy in the eighties. I think it probably sparked an early interest in sustainability and a life long fascination with how humans interact with the rest of the natural world. Later, Desmond Morris’ Naked Ape then a stint cleaning up penguins caught in a South African oil slick finally helped direct me towards a Zoology degree.
Disease Ecology and Evolution. Infection captured my imagination early in my undergraduate degree and evolution, genetics, parasitology and immunology seemed obvious themes to pursue. These subject areas continue to define my research and ensure that I share my time across the field, lab, and office (and the rest running around after my kids). I enjoy tackling diverse questions in infectious disease, using a range of approaches to generate data, and pride myself on being able to knock all sorts of dataset into shape in order to make sense of it.
Ranavirus. I am motivated by questions of conservation and evolutionary importance. I have mostly worked on viral pathogens (genus Ranavirus) and their amphibian hosts. I have used spatial epidemiology, phylogenetics and genomics to study virus emergence and evolution as well as host responses. I have also developed diagnostic tools and lab systems to study viruses. I have ongoing collaborative projects in Costa Rica, Iberia, China, the USA and the UK.
This site is meant to serve a number of audiences, but regardless of your background or reasons for being here, should be a showcase of my research and occasionally some other really cool stuff that excites or troubles me!
My CV is available to download here