Division of Evolution, Infection and Genomics

Organisation profile

Organisation profile

The Division of Evolution, Infection and Genomics spans fundamental biological research into evolution of molecules and organisms, through to applications of modern genomic techniques for the understanding, diagnosis and treatment of genetic disease in humans.

Our research is unified by the concept of the genome as a platform from which biological function and dysfunction can be understood. We seek to understand how changes in genes and genomes lead to changes in all forms of phenotype, ranging from speciation events to alterations in Mendelian and quantitative traits that underlie behaviour and disease.

Our research

Evolutionary biology

All life can be understood in terms of evolutionary processes, from microbial and viral biology through to entire organisms and human disease.

Our researchers compare both molecular sequences and whole organism physiology and phenotype to derive inference about the origins of species, genes, and traits and how adaptive processes shape biological function through changes to the genome.

Functional genomics

Functional genomics seeks to characterise and quantify all the molecules encoded in the genome, such as RNA and protein, to study how environment, lifecycle or pathology lead to changes in these molecular signatures.

This in turn allows us to understand processes such as development, response to environmental stress, biological signalling, disease and dysfunction.


Infections caused by bacteria, fungi and viruses are a major causes of human disease and by 2050 the impact of antimicrobial resistance is expected to drive deaths above those seen for cancer.

Our multidisciplinary Infection research benefits from proximity to clinics and addresses a triad of factors – host, pathogen and microbiome – to innovate the discovery of new therapies, adapt the use of existing therapies and improve diagnosis.

Genomic medicine

Our ability to rapidly sequence human genomes underpins a new age of personalised medicine. Our research covers a broad spectrum of healthcare and includes programmes in cancer genetics, neuropsychiatry, developmental and functional eye disorders, biochemical genetics and birth defects.

The overarching aim is to identify the genetic basis of both single gene and complex disorders.

Head of division

Professor Ray O'Keefe

Our researchers

View a list of researchers within the Division


Professor Simon Hubbard
tel: +44 (0)161 306 8930
email: [email protected]

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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