2014-Present: NERC CASE PhD student, Imperial College London and Institute of Zoology
2010-2014: Biological Sciences MSci, University College London
My research examines the relationships between emerging fungal pathogens, their hosts, and the communities of microbes that they interact with. Primarily I am investigating the spread of the fatal chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis across high altitude amphibian populations in the Pyrenees mountain range of France and Spain. This system has been studied for over a decade and has a rich epidemiological data set tracking the emergence of infection at different sites.
Our data has shown a high degree of variability in response to infection with some populations showing continued decline and high prevalence, while others exhibit signs of development of resistance or tolerance to infection. Determining the drivers underpinning these differences in susceptibility profiles between populations is the main focus of my PhD.
My work employs a range of molecular biology and analytical chemistry techniques including microbial culture methods, next generation sequencing and metabolomics. In addition to field based studies, I have also developed in-vitro and in-vivo experimental systems.
Bates, K.A., Sommer, U., Viant, M., Shelton, M.G., Wierzibicki, C., Hopkins, K., Tapley, B., Michaels, C., Garner, T.W.J., Harrison, X.A., Fisher, M.C. In prep.
Fisher, M.C., Ghosh, P., Shelton, M.G., Bates, K.A. et al. Submitted.
Bates, K.A., Shelton, M.G., Mercier, V.L., Hopkins, K., Harrison, X.A., Petrovan, S.O., Fisher, M.C. Host, environment and exposure to the emerging fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans impacts amphibian cross-Kingdom microbial diversity. Submitted to Biology Letters.
Bates, K.A., Clare, F.C., O'Hanlon, S., Bosch, J., Brookes, L., Hopkins, K., McLaughlin, E., Daniel, E., Garner, T.W.J., Fisher, M.C., Harrison, X.A. Amphibian chytridiomycosis outbreak dynamics are linked with host skin bacterial community structure. Nature Communications. Accepted January 2018.
Dillon, M.J., Bowkett, A.E., Bungard, M.J., Beckman, K., O'Brien, M., Bates, K.A., Fisher, M.C., Stevens, J.R. & Thornton, C.R. (2017). Tracking the amphibian pathogens Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis and Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans by using a highly specific monoclonal antibody and lateral-flow technology. Microbial Biotechnology. 10(2): 381-394. doi:10.1111/1751-7915.12464.
Professor Matthew Fisher, Imperial College London
Professor Trenton Garner, IOZ and University College London
Dr. Xavier Harrison, IOZ