The 5th Annual UK Cellular Microbiology Meeting

Interwoven green and red abstract shapes on the left of the image and a grid of green dots on right, on a black background.  It is a machine learning approach to investigate Shigella (red) – septin cage (green) entrapment using high content microscopy. Credit Ana Teresa Lopez Jimenez.

The UK Cellular microbiology network meetings were started in 2019 and are a must-attend for anyone working on host-pathogen interactions. With an emphasis on interactions at or within the host cell, this meeting will focus on how pathogens subvert host cellular processes and how the cell responds to invasion. The meeting will bring together the host-pathogen interaction community, particularly from the UK, to provide a network to foster collaboration and interchange across the various pathogens under study.

This event is organised by leading researchers from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University College London, Kings College London and Sheffield University.

Please note that this event starts from 12:00 on 19 June, and ends at 15:00 on 20 June (accommodation not provided).


We are delighted to announce two leading experts who will be speaking at the event. 

  • Pascale Cossart, Emeritus Professor at the Pasteur Institute and Secrétaire Perpétuel de l’Académie des Sciences
  • Felix Randow, Group leader at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge.

Programme, Monday 19 June

12:00 - 12:50 - Registration and lunch

Lunch and networking in the South Courtyard.

12:50 - 13:00 - Welcome and event start

Serge Mostowy will open the event in the John Snow Lecture Theatre.

13:00 - 14:00 - Keynote speaker Pascale Cossart (Institut Pasteur)

How we gave birth to a star

14:15 - 15:00 - Session 1

Chairs - Serge Mostowy and Daniel Humphreys.

  • Orientia tsutsugamushi hijacks BICD-dependent dynein motility for intracellular transport and autophagy evasion - Giulia Manigrasso, MRC LMB.
  • The Salmonella effector SteD is a co-activator of the E3 ubiquitin ligase WWP2 - Samkeliso Lisa Blundell, Imperial College.
  • Imaging poxvirus assembly and exit from infected cells - Miguel Hernandez-Gonzalez, Francis Crick.

Talks will be 12 minutes followed by 3 minutes Q&A.

15:00 - 15:30 Refreshment break 

Tea, coffee and snacks in the South Courtyard

15:30 - 16:15 - Session 3

Chair - Phil Elks.

  • Training innate immunity in zebrafish using Shigella - Margarida Gomes, LSHTM.
  • Boosting the innate immune response to Candida albicans infections via HIF modulation - Thomas Burgess, Sheffield.
  • Delivering an Envelope! SARS-CoV-2 Envelope hijacks an ARFRP1-AP1-AP1AR trafficking pathway to deacidify lysosomes - Guy Pearson, Francis Crick.

Talks will be 12 minutes followed by 3 minutes Q&A.

16:15 - 17:00 - Flash Talks

A set of very short presentations:

  • The role of septin heteromer composition on cage entrapment of Shigella - Gizem Ozbaykal-Guler, LSHTM.
  • Determination of Salmonella T3SS SPI-2 effectors involved in inhibition of interferon signaling - Keith Egger, KCL.
  • Non-canonical reprogramming of transcriptional pathways by Salmonella Typhimurium - Ines Diaz del Olmo, Imperial College.
  • NMR and GC-MS metabolomic studies of symbioses between bacterial vaginosis-associated bacteria and lactobacilli - Shan Yin, KCL.
  • The role of bacterial endosymbionts in host-Mucorales interactions - Daniel Stark, Sheffield.
  • Use of Staphylococcus aureus to study septin interactions with Gram-positive bacterial pathogens - Stevens Robertin, LSHTM.
  • Investigating Staphylococcus aureus - Macrophage Interactions during Infection via the Type VII Secretion System - Richard Allen, Warwick.
17:00 - 19:00 - Poster Presentations and networking

Poster presentations and a small reception in the South Courtyard.


Programme, Tuesday 20 June


08:30 - 09:00 Welcome coffee and snack

Coffee, tea and snacks will be served in the South Courtyard.

09:00 - 10:00 Keynote speaker Felix Randow (MRC LMB)

How cells defend their cytosol against invasive bacteria.

10:15 - 11:15 Session 3

Chair: Charlotte Odendall

  • How cytosolic bacteria inhibit RNF213-mediated cell autonomous immunity - Magdalena Szczesna, Imperial College.
  • Stick it together: how GBPs activate the non-canonical inflammasome - Miriam Kutsch, Heinrich Heine University (Germany).
  • Convergent evolution of SARS-CoV-2 VOCs to enhance innate immune suppression - Lucy Thorne, UCL / Imperial College.
  • Enhanced innate immune evasion by SARS-CoV-2 Omicron subvariants - Ann-Kathrin Reuschl, UCL.

Talks will be 12 minutes followed by 3 minutes Q&A.

11:15 - 12:00 Flash Talks
  • The role of urine microenvironment in biofilm and antibiotic response on uropathogens - Ramon Garcia Maset, UCL.
  • Translation of pleurocidin-derived antimicrobial peptide therapeutics - Janis Romanopulos, KCL.
  • Molecular dissection of kinase reprogramming by bacterial effectors - Ioanna Panagi, Imperial College.
  • Analysing antibacterial autophagy during infection with Burkholderia - Yizhou Huang, Imperial College.
  • Establishing tools to study the microbicidal capacity of human placental macrophages across gestation - Nagisa Yoshida, Cambridge.
  • Modulating macrophages as a therapeutic strategy in a zebrafish tuberculosis model - Zoe Charlotte Speirs, Sheffield.
12:00 - 13:00 Poster presentations and Lunch

Poster presentations and lunch will be served in the South Courtyard.

13:00 - 14:00 Session 4

Chair: Jennifer Rohn

  • The role of peroxisomes during M. tuberculosis infection of human macrophages - Enrica Pellegrino, Francis Crick.
  • Mycobacterial infection-induced miR-126 protects the host by suppressing permissive macrophages - Kathryn Wright, Centenary Institute (Australia).
  • Early transcriptomic responses of osteoblasts and Staphylococcus aureus during intracellular infection - JJ Awodipe, Warwick.
  • Exotoxin inhibitors as new therapeutics: A drug discovery pipeline from in vitro to in vivo analysis - Daniel Foulkes, Liverpool.

Talks will be 12 minutes followed by 3 minutes Q&A.

14:00 - 14:30 Discussion and Prize Giving

With coffee, tea and snacks in the South Courtyard.