My first rotation project of the doctoral training programme took place under the supervision of Kayla King (Lab website); quantifying superoxide production by Enterococcus faecalis in response to experimental evolution with Staphylococcus aureus within a nematode host.
I then moved to work with Craig MacLean (Lab website) where I investigated the effects of plasmid carriage and bacteriophage attack on the expression of the SOS response in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
My research for the next three years will be supervised by Craig, Kayla and Stu West. It will focus on coevolution between P. aeruginosa and six bacteriophages. I am interested in the effects of host/parasite diversity on coevolutionary dynamics and in using experimental evolution to improve our understanding of how bacteria might respond to the use of bacteriophages as biological control agents to treat infections in humans.
2011 - 2013 Erasmus Mundus Master Programme in Evolutionary Biology
Université Montpellier II (Montpellier, France)
Harvard University (Cambridge, MA)
Uppsala University (Uppsala, Sweden)
2010 - 2011 MSc in Ecology, Evolution and Conservation
Imperial College London (Silwood Park Campus, Ascot, UK)
2006 - 2010 BSc (Hons) in Biology
University of Bath (Somerset, UK)
Université Montpellier II (Montpellier, France) February 2013 - August 2013
Experimental coevolution of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and six different bacteriophage isolates Lab Website
Harvard University (Cambridge, MA) September 2012 - Feb 2013
Investigating the evolution of cooperation in a synthetic three species microbial consortium and the effects of experimental evolution on community structure Lab Website
Université Montpellier II (Montpellier, France) February 2012 - August 2012
Used experimental evolution to increase bacteriophage virulence on clinical isolate of Pseudomonas aeruginosa with a view to future phage therapies or disinfectants Lab Website
Imperial College London (London, UK) May 2011 - September 2011
Mitigating human wildlife conflict as a result of livestock predation by Lions and Hyenas on a Massai group ranch near Tsavo West national park, Kenya.
Operation Wallacea (Hoga, Indonesia) Autumn 2010
Participated in an expedition to Indonesia where I assisted in the completion of several marine based ecological research projects by diving transects over coral reefs and surveying invertebrate diversity.
Biosphere Expeditions and Slovak Wildlife Society (Liptovsky Hradok, Slovakia) February 2010
Travelled to Slovakia where I was involved in surveying Wolf and Lynx populations in the Tatra Mountains by walking transects and collecting stool samples for DNA extraction.
University of Bath (Bath, UK) October 2009 - January 2010
Investigated the effect of salinity on the toxicity of Cadmium to the amphipod Gammarus chevreuxi
UCB Celltech (Slough, UK) September 2008 - September 2009
Investigating the effect of carbon source and exponential feeding strategies of periplasmic retention of a humanised Fab fragment by Escherichia coli W3110.
Betts, A., Kaltz, O. and Hochberg, M.E. (2013). (2014) Contrasted coevolutionary dynamics between a bacterial pathogen and its bacteriophages. PNAS 111(30), pp 11109–11114 PDF
Harcombe, W.R, Riehl, W.J., Dukovski, I., Granger, B.R., Betts, A., Lang, A.H., Bonilla, G., Kar, A., Mehta, P., Marx, C.J, Segre, D. (2014) Metabolic resource allocation in individual microbes determines ecosystem interactions and spatial dynamics. Cell Reports 7(4), pp 1104-1115 PDF
Betts, A., Kaltz, O., Vasse, M. and Hochberg, M.E. (2013). Back to the Future: Evolving bacteriophages to increase their effectiveness against the pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1. Evolutionary Applications 6(7), pp 1054-1063 PDF
European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB), Tubingen 2010