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Institute of Aquaculture: About: People: Andrew Desbois

Andrew Desbois

Dr Andrew Desbois

T: +44 [0]1786 467894
E: ad54 at stir dot ac dot uk

Lecturer in Marine Biotechnology

My research priorities include the discovery and development of bioactive compounds from marine microbes, particularly agents that exert activities against drug-resistant pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Of special interest are the antimicrobial properties of fatty acids as well as metabolites produced by microalgae. In addition, I am developing more ethically acceptable alternative hosts to use as tools for investigating mechanisms of virulence in microbial pathogens that infect fish in aquaculture.

I have a BSc in Applied Biology (University of Bath) and a PhD in Marine Biology (University of St Andrews). With respect to teaching, I contribute to the MSc in Marine Biotechnology course. Finally, I am a member of the Society for General Microbiology and the Society for Applied Microbiology.

Selected recent papers

Desbois, A. P. and Lawlor, K. C. (2013) Antibacterial activity of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids against Propionibacterium acnes and Staphylococcus aureus. Marine Drugs 11: 4544-4557.

Desbois, A. P., Sattar, A., Graham, S., Warn, P. A. and Coote, P. J. (2013) MRSA decolonization of cotton rat nares by a combination treatment comprising lysostaphin and the antimicrobial peptide ranalexin. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 68: 2569-2575.

Desbois, A. P. (2013) Antimicrobial properties of eicosapentaenoic acid (C20:5n-3). In: Marine Microbiology: Bioactive Compounds and Biotechnological Applications (Kim, S.-K., ed.), Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA: Hoboken, pp. 351-367.

MacCallum, D., Desbois, A. P. and Coote, P. J. (2013) Enhanced efficacy of synergistic combinations of antimicrobial peptides with caspofungin versus Candida albicans in insect and murine models of systemic infection. European Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases 32:1055–1062.

Desbois, A. P. (2012) Potential applications of antimicrobial fatty acids in medicine, agriculture and other industries. Recent Patents on Anti-Infective Drug Discovery 7: 111-122.

Desbois, A. P. and Coote, P. J. (2012) Utility of Greater wax moth larva (Galleria mellonella) for evaluating the toxicity and efficacy of new antimicrobial agents. In: Advances in Applied Microbiology vol. 78 (Laskin, A., Gadd, G. and Sariaslani, S., eds.), Academic Press: Burlington, pp. 25-53.

Desbois, A. P. and Coote, P. J. (2011) Bactericidal synergy of lysostaphin in combination with antimicrobial peptides. European Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases 30: 1015-1021.

Desbois, A. P. and Coote, P. J. (2011) Wax moth larva Galleria mellonella: A new in vivo model for evaluating the efficacy of anti-staphylococcal agents. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 66: 1785-1790.

Desbois, A. P., Tschörner, D. and Coote, P. J. (2011) Survey of small antifungal peptides with chemotherapeutic potential. Current Pharmaceutical Biotechnology 12: 1263-1291.

Smith, V. J., Desbois, A. P. and Dyrynda, E. A. (2010) Conventional and unconventional antimicrobials from fish, marine invertebrates and micro-algae. Marine Drugs 8: 1213-1262.

Desbois, A. P., Gemmell, C. G. and Coote, P. J. (2010) In vivo efficacy of the antimicrobial peptide ranalexin in combination with the endopeptidase lysostaphin against wound and systemic meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections. International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents 35: 559-565.

Desbois, A. P., Walton, M. and Smith, V. J. (2010) Differential antibacterial activities of fusiform and oval morphotypes of Phaeodactylum tricornutum (Bacillariophyceae). Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 90: 769-774.

Desbois, A. P. and Smith, V. J. (2010) Antibacterial free fatty acids: activities, mechanisms of action and biotechnological potential. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 85: 1629-1642.

Desbois, A. P., Lang, S., Gemmell, C. G. and Coote, P. J. (2010) Surface disinfection properties of the combination of an antimicrobial peptide, ranalexin, with an endopeptidase, lysostaphin, against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Journal of Applied Microbiology 108: 723-730.

Desbois, A. P., Mearns-Spragg, A. and Smith, V. J. (2009) A fatty acid from the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum is antibacterial against diverse bacteria including multi-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Marine Biotechnology 11: 45-52.

Desbois, A. P., Lebl, T., Yan, L. and Smith, V. J. (2008) Isolation and structural characterisation of two antibacterial fatty acids from the marine diatom, Phaeodactylum tricornutum. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 81: 755-764.


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