School of Computing

Staff Profiles

Professor Anil Wipat

Professor of Integrative Bioinformatics


I am a Professor of Bioinformatics at the School of Computing at Newcastle University.

I co-direct Newcastle's Interdisciplinary Computing and Complex BioSystems (ICOS) research group.

I am also affiliated with the Centre for Bacterial Cell Biology, associate-director of the Centre for Synthetic Biology and Bioexploitation and director of the Centre for Health and Bioinformatics.


My research forms part of the larger research effort of the the ICOS research group.

My individual team researches data integration in bioinformatics at various levels from the local integration of ‘omics’ datasets to form integrated functional networks, through to the integration of remote heterogeneous databases. We apply these data integration strategies to problems in Systems and Synthetic Biology.

The biological applications of our research are quite diverse ranging from microbiology and metagenomics, through to the mechanisms of human genetic disease and ageing. Traditionally we have a strong interest and background in microbial genomics and functional genomics particularly for Gram-positive microorganisms such as Bacillus and relatives.

We are applying our combined expertise in bioinformatics, data integration, evolutionary computation and microbial genomics to the problem of designing microbial systems, in the area of Synthetic Biology. We are particularly interested in model-driven design for synthetic biology and are exploring how biological data can be used to inform this design process. We also investigating approaches to facilitate an integrative and systems approach to biology, with a particular emphasis on modelling and networks.

Our research in e-Science, Grid and cloud computing technology allows us to tackle problems in biological data analysis, simulation, and integration. We are interested in how the biological sciences can, in turn, drive developments in computing science. In particular, we are developing Cloud computing technology for data integration, computational modelling and comparative genomics, with an emphasis on the analysis of metagenomic datasets.

The ICOS group maintains wet-lab facilities in collaboration with the Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences to allow the implementation of our computational designs of biological systems, with a particular focus on synthetic biology applied to B. subtilis.

We are particularly interested in the development and applications of new standards, and work closely with the community in the development of the major standard in Synthetic Biology, Synthetic Biology Open Language. In 2016 I was elected as the chair of the International SBOL initiative. Our team are also members of the UK Flowers Initiative, working towards developing synthetic biology tools and infrastructure.

Opportunities to work in our group arise frequently. We recruit both computational and wet-lab researchers. Please visit the positions available link for details or send a CV to anil.wipat[theusualsymbol]

We gratefully acknowledge funding from a variety of sources, including the BBSRC, EPSRC, NERC, MRC and the Wellcome Trust.