At Newcastle, world-class microbiological research is undertaken in medical sciences, biological sciences, civil engineering and geoscience.

Various successful spin-off companies have been created by our staff as a result of their research and our ability to translate basic biological research to the industrial setting. For example, Demuris Ltd is a drug discovery company that develops novel therapeutics, including new antibiotics that will combat the threat from emerging diseases and the rise of antibiotic resistance.

We offer studentships through a variety of funding sources and our research degrees are complemented by the MRes in Molecular Microbiology, which can also be studied as part of an integrated MRes/PhD programme. Research outputs are regularly published in the leading international scientific journals


Our Centre for Bacterial Cell Biology  in medical sciences has the strongest concentration in the world of scientists working on fundamental problems in bacterial cells. The Centre is based in a new custom-built research facility.

MPhil/PhD Study

Our research and MPhil/ PhD supervision is available in the following subject areas:

Centre for Bacterial Cell Biology

Research focuses on:
• cell division
• the control of gene expression
• cell morphogenesis
• protein synthesis
• metal–protein complexes

The applied and environmental microbiology group

Diverse work in the field of biological sciences, researching microbial biology in a range of habitats, including:
• discovering natural products
• improving our understanding about the role of microbiology in reducing food spoilage
• producing biofuels
• the bioremediation of polluted environments.

Successful spin-off companies such as Biofresh Ltd and Geneius Laboratories, provide industrial placements to our postgraduate students.

Microbial ecology and environmental microbiology

An international reputation for multidisciplinary research is enjoyed by Civil Engineering and Geosciences and contributes fundamental advances in environmental engineering and biogeochemistry.

Leading research includes areas as varied as:
• anaerobic crude oil degradation in petroleum reservoirs
• engineered biological treatment systems 
• the microbial ecology of climatically significant processes such as methane cycling

Research involves collaboration with mathematicians and modellers to develop underlying methods and theories that unite fundamental and applied aspects of the microbiology of environmental engineering and Earth systems.

We have particular expertise in linking measured geochemical processes directly to the size and diversity of the microbial communities that mediate them.

Research students are supported in their studies through a structured programme of supervision and training via our faculty specific Research Training Programmes which have been endorsed by the UK research councils and adhere to their framework of excellence.

Professional Development

Successful spin-off companies such as Biofresh Ltd and Geneius Laboratories, provide industrial placements to our postgraduate students.


Postgraduate degrees in this subject area: