Professorships awarded by UEA to three Quadram Institute scientists

14th March 2022

Three leading Quadram Institute scientists have been awarded professorships by the University of East Anglia (UEA).

Professor Alison Mather  – group leader and institute lead for the Microbes in the Food Chain strategic programme, also a Food Standards Agency Fellow. Her interests are the epidemiology, evolution and dynamics of foodborne and zoonotic bacteria, with a particular focus on antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Prof Mather was awarded a BSc in biomedical toxicology and an MSc in epidemiology from the University of Guelph, followed by a PhD at the University of Glasgow, where she took an epidemiological and ecological approach to the study of AMR in bacterial populations from animals and humans.

After moving to the Wellcome Sanger Institute, her work utilised whole genome sequencing (WGS) to examine, in the greatest resolution, the evolution and transmission of both bacteria and AMR between and within different host populations. In 2017 Prof Mather moved to the Quadram Institute, where her group uses genomics and metagenomics to study pathogenic and commensal bacteria throughout the food chain.

Professor Mark Webber  – group leader for a group studying the molecular mechanisms of antibiotic resistance with focus on understanding how, where, when and why bacteria evolve antimicrobial resistance.

He has a particular interest in bacterial biofilms and investigating how bacteria adapt to antimicrobial pressure within a biofilm. His group uses a variety of contemporary molecular microbiology approaches to study bacterial survival and resistance mechanisms in conditions relevant to the food chain.

Before joining the Quadram Institute Prof Webber led a research group at the University of Birmingham, which he established during a BBSRC David Phillips fellowship studying the evolution of biocide-antibiotic cross resistance.

Professor Lindsay Hall  – a group leader at Quadram Institute since 2015 and also a Wellcome Investigator. In 2020 Prof Hall was also appointed as Chair of Intestinal Microbiome at Technical University Munich, Germany. Her teams’ research focus involves defining microbe/microbiota interactions during the early life developmental window.

Prof Hall obtained a BSc in Microbiology from the University of Glasgow, a PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Cambridge (Wellcome Sanger Institute), and was a postdoctoral fellow at University College Cork, Ireland (APC Microbiome Institute). She returned to the UK to take up a Senior Lectureship at the University of East Anglia before her move to the Quadram.

Director of the Quadram Institute Prof Ian Charles said: “These new professorships at the Quadram are richly deserved and congratulations to Alison, Mark and Lindsay. These appointments recognise the excellence of the science undertaken by our researchers and build on the strong links we have with the UEA.”

Professor Charles ffrench-Constant, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for the faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at the University of East Anglia said: “UEA and the Quadram Institute share the common vision of a world-leading campus for food and gut health, and it is an enormous pleasure to be able to recognise the outstanding research that Alison, Lindsay and Mark have made towards delivering this goal by the award of these professorships”

About the Quadram Institute

The Quadram Institute is an interdisciplinary research centre at the forefront of a new era of food and health research. It brings together researchers and clinicians under one roof and houses one of Europe’s largest endoscopy units and a clinical research facility.

Based on the Norwich Research Park, the Quadram Institute is a partnership between Quadram Institute Bioscience, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, the University of East Anglia and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC).

Its mission is to deliver healthier lives through innovation in gut health, microbiology and food and its vision is to understand how food and microbes interact to promote health and prevent disease.

Four interconnected research themes in Quadram Institute Bioscience deliver a pipeline of research in plants, microbes, food and health: microbes in the food chain; the gut and the microbiome; and food innovation. The Quadram Institute is also home to two BBSRC-funded national capabilities: Food Databanks and the National Collection of Yeast Cultures.

Related Research Groups


Alison Mather

Webber group

Mark Webber

Hall Group

Lindsay Hall