Guoqing Xia, Ph.D.

Dr, BSc, MSc, PhD, FHEA, Ph.D.

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Personal profile


           Bacterial cell envelope plays crucial roles in bacterial physiology, morphogenesis, and interactions with phages or host cells. We are interested in the biosynthesis, structure, and function of bacterial cell surface molecules, particularly glycopolymers and membrane proteins, in nosocomial drug-resistant pathogens. We use a wide range of molecular and cellular microbiology approaches to study the functions of these surface molecules in antimicrobial resistance, biofilm formation, microbial pathogenesis, immune evasion and interactions with bacteriophage.  We believe this work will provide novel insight into the roles of bacterial surface molecules in host-microbe interactions and help develop novel diagnostics and therapeutics for drug-resistant bacterial infections.  




Guoqing studied Microbiology and received his PhD from the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He subsequently undertook several postdoctoral positions investigating host-microbe interactions before being appointed group leader at the University of Tübingen. In 2013, he was appointed Senior Lecturer at the University of Manchester.


BSc, MSc, PhD, DrRerNat, FHEA

Certificate in Medical Education 

Memberships of committees and professional bodies


  • British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC)

  • International Society for Viruses of Microorganisms (ISVM)

  • Society for General Microbiology (SGM)
  • German Association for General and Applied Microbiology (VAAM)
  • Editor - FEMS Microbiology Letters (2016-2018)

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Research interests

1. Tackling antibiotic resistance in  hospital acquired infections.

     Antibiotic resistance has become a global crisis and  ESKAPE pathogens including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in particular pose a serious threat to our healthcare system. Our research focuses on  β-lactam resistance mechanisms  and new agents active against these priority pathogens .


  • Mikkelsen K, Sirisarn W, et al (2021 ). The novel membrane-associated auxiliary factors AuxA and AuxB modulate β-lactam resistance in MRSA by stabilizing lipoteichoic acids. Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2021 Mar;57(3):106283.

  • Gerlach D, Guo Y, et al (2018) Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus alters cell wall glycosylation to evade immunityNature. 563, 705-709. 

  • Waters EM, Rudkin JK, et al  (2017) Redeploying β-lactam antibiotics as a novel anti-virulence strategy for the treatment of severe MRSA infections, J Infect Dis, 215, 80-87.

  • Brown S, Xia G, et al (2012) Methicillin resistance in Staphylococcus aureus requires glycosylated wall teichoic acids. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA,109: 18909-14

2. Biology and biomedical application of phage.

    Increasing antibiotic resistance has prompted a renewed interest in phage research. Our research focuses on S. aureus phages and aims to investigate phage-host interactions, such as phage adsorption, replication, and  bacterial  immunity to phage infections. We believe that this study will provide new insights and tools for the development of new diagnostics and therapeutics for drug-resistant bacterial infections.


  • Xia G, Corrigan RM, et al (2011).Wall teichoic acid-dependent adsorption of staphylococcal siphovirus and myovirus. J. Bacteriol.,193, 4006-09.
  • Winstel V, Liang C, et al (2013) Wall teichoic acid structure governs horizontal gene transfer between major bacterial pathogens. Nat. Commun, 4: Article number 2345.

  • Xia G, Wolz C.(2014) Phages of Staphylococcus aureus and their impact on host evolution. Infect. Genet. Evol. 21:593-601.

  • Idelevich E, Walther T, et al (2014).Bacteriophage-based latex agglutination test for rapid identification of Staphylococcus aureusJ. Clin. Microbiol. 52(9), 3394-3398

  • Li, X, Gerlach D, et al  (2015). An accessory wall teichoic acid glycosyltransferase protects Staphylococcus aureus from the lytic activity of Podoviridae. Sci Rep, 5, 17219.

  • Koc C, Xia G,  et al. (2016). Structure of the host-recognition device of Staphylococcus aureus phage Φ11.  Sci Rep, 6, 27581.

  • Li X, Koc C,  et al (2016). An essential role for the baseplate protein Gp45 in phage adsorption to Staphylococcus aureus. Sci Rep, 6, 26455.

  • Whittard E, Redfern J, et al ( 2021 ) Phenotypic and genotypic characterization of novel polyvalent bacteriophages with potent in vitro activity against an international collection of genetically giverse Staphylococcus aureus. Front. Cell. Infect. Microbiol., 11, 698909.



Current Teaching in FBMH

  1. MSc in Medical Microbiology  

         MEDN68652 Vaccinations, Antimicrobials and Resistance 

         MEDN68680: Microbiology dissertation

     2. MBChB Program :

         Problem based learning 

         PEP Literature review  

    3. MSc programme in Infection Biology:

          BIOL66121 Research Project I

          BIOL66132 Research Project II              

    4. UGT teaching :

        BIOOL21090, BIOL30101 

        BIOL30030,  BIOL31220,

        BIOL40000 , BIOL33000

        BIOL40010    MSci Research Project 

  5. MAHSE/Doctoral Academy (2017-):

         HSST:  DrClinSci (Microbiology)

  6. SBS Examinations Officer ( 2022-)


Past Teaching

  1. Programme Director for MSc in Medical Microbiology  ( 2013- 2015 )
  2. Unit lead  and Lecturer :  ( 2013-2022)

           MEDN 68621: Understanding Infection ( 2013-2016 )

           MEDN 68680: Microbiology Dissertation (2013-2016)

           BIOL66121 Research Project I ( 2018-2022 )          

    3. Lecturer/ Teaching assistant: (2013-2022 )

           MEDN 68511: Principles of Microbiology    

           MEDN 68632: Molecular Diagnostics

           MEDN 68662:  Clinical Microbiology 1 

           MEDN 68672:  Clinical Microbiology 2

           MEDN 69910:  Research Methods

           MEDN 68642:  Global Health and Epidemiology

           BIOL 68921 :   Host-pathogen interactions in health and disease 



PhD Opportunities:


1. β-Lactam resistance in MRSA: mechanisms and solutions. 

2. Novel strategies and agents for ESKAPE infections

3. Biology and biomedical applications of phages.




My group

Group Members:  



All rooms are located in stopford building and phone numbers start with 0161  27-

Lab address:

Room 1.223, Stopford building, 

University of Manchester 

Oxford Road 

Manchester, M13 9PT 

United Kingdom



1. Bacteriology Research at the University of Manchester

2. The Lydia Becker Institute of Immunology and Inflammation




Media contributions and coverage


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Areas of expertise

  • Q Science (General)
  • Microbiology
  • Bacteriology
  • Bacterial cell surface
  • Antimicrobial resistance
  • Bacteriophages
  • Host-pathogen interations
  • teichoic acids
  • Glycobiology
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • MRSA
  • Antibiotics
  • Vaccine
  • Antibodies
  • phage
  • Immune evasion

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Lydia Becker Institute


  • Antimicrobial resistance
  • MRSA
  • Bacterial cell surface
  • Bacteriophage
  • Teichoic acids
  • Microbial Glycobiology
  • S. aureus
  • phage
  • Antibiotics
  • Bacteriology
  • Medical Microbiology


Dive into the research topics where Guoqing Xia is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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  • DClinSci

    Guoqing Xia (Examiner)

    30 Nov 2022

    Activity: ExaminationResearch

  • PhD

    Guoqing Xia (Examiner)

    22 Jun 2022

    Activity: ExaminationResearch

  • DClinSci

    Guoqing Xia (Examiner)

    15 Dec 2021

    Activity: ExaminationResearch

  • Staph GBI & Florey Symposium

    Guoqing Xia (Participant)

    8 Jul 2021

    Activity: Participating in or organising event(s)Participating in a conference, workshop, exhibition, performance, inquiry, course etcResearch

  • 2021 BioInfect Conference

    Guoqing Xia (Participant)

    21 Apr 2021

    Activity: Participating in or organising event(s)Participating in a conference, workshop, exhibition, performance, inquiry, course etcResearch