School of Medical Education

Staff Profile

Dr Jacqueline Spence

Senior Lecturer


Brief Career History


I began my career in the Pathology Department at Dryburn Hospital in Durham (now UHND) where I worked in the Histology/Cytology Laboratory as a biomedical scientist for 6 years. I left to take up a short term post as a senior research technician working on my own project in the Plant Sciences Division of the Biological Sciences Department at Durham University. I published the results of my research as an MSc Thesis in 1992.


I stayed at Durham to study for a PhD in Plant Cell Biology then worked for a number of years as a post-doctoral researcher in plant cell biology and pro-rata associate lecturer teaching across the Biological Sciences disciplines until I joined the new Phase 1 Medicine Programme at Durham Queen’s Campus in 2001. In 2005 I took up the post of Deputy Head of Undergraduate Medicine at Durham and remained with the medicine programme until it closed in 2017.


Harris N., Gates P., Spence J. (1991) Development of the Silique of Arabidopsis thaliana.

Federation Juan March Series Universitaria (Madrid) 258: 61


Spence J. (1992) Development of the Silique of Arabidopsis thaliana.

MSc ThesisUniversity of Durham


Harris N., Spence J., & Oparka K. J. (1994) General and Enzyme Histochemistry

in: Plant Cell Biology: A Practical Approach (Ed. N. Harris & K. J. Oparka) IRL Press at Oxford University Press, Oxford, New York, Tokyo. 51-68


Harris N., Spence J. & Brennan C. (1995) Cell Walls in Fruits and Seeds

Proc. Roy. Microscop. Soc. 30, 14


Spence J. (1995) Dehiscence in Brassicas

PhD ThesisUniversity of Durham


Spence J. & Harris N. (1995) Pod Shatter in Brassicas

Proc. Roy. Microscop. Soc. 30, 35


Spence J., Vercher Y., Gates P. & Harris N. (1996) Pod Shatter in Arabidopsis thaliana, Brassica napus and Brassica juncea

Journal of Microscopy 181, 2, 195 – 203


Shirsat A., Bell A., Spence J. & Harris N. (1996) The Brassica napus extA Extensin Gene is Expressed in Regions of the Plant Subject to Tensile Stress

Planta 199, 618 – 624


Powell S., Spence J.; Bharathi M., Gatehouse A. M. R., Gatehouse J. (1998) Immunohistochemical and Developmental Studies to Elucidate the Mechanism of Action of the Snowdrop Lectin on the Rice Brown Planthopper

Journal of Insect Physiology 44, no. 7/8


Rao K. V., Rathore K. S., Hodges T. K., Fu X., Stoger E., Sudhakar D., Williams S., Christou P., Bharathi M., Bown D. P. Powell K. S., Spence J., Gatehouse A. M. R., Gatehouse J. A. (1998).

Expression of Snowdrop Lectin (GNA) in Transgenic Rice Plants Confers Resistance to Rice Brown Planthopper

Plant Journal 15, 469-477


Spence J. (2001) Plant Histology

in: Plant Cell Biology:A Practical Approach Second Edition (Ed. C. Hawes and B. Satiat – Jeunemaitre) Oxford University Press, Oxford, New York, pp 189 - 206


Chaytor A., Spence J., Armstrong A. and McLachlan J.C., (2012)

Do Students Learn to be more Conscientious at Medical School?

BMC Medical Education 12:54



Reports published in the AFRC Arabidopsis Newsletters (1990 – 1992)

Reports published in the Proceedings of Plant Molecular Biology 1 Arabidopsis meetings (1990 – 1992)