Dr Nick Tucker

Course Leader & Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences

+44 (0)1473 338723
School of Allied Health Sciences
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Dr. Nick Tucker is the course leader for Biomedical Sciences. He is a molecular microbiologist interested in the biology of Pseudomonas bacteria. This genus contains pathogens such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa as well as the important biotechnology chassis organism Pseudomonas putida.

Nick grew up in Suffolk and studied biochemistry at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh followed by human molecular genetics at Imperial College London where he gained an interest in gene regulation. In 2002 he moved to the University of East Anglia to study transcriptional regulation of the Escherichia coli nitrosative stress response and completed this work at the BBSRC John Innes Centre in 2005. He remained at the John Innes Centre as a post-doctoral research fellow until establishing his own research group at the University of Strathclyde in 2009. During 13 years at Strathclyde Nick’s work has been funded by various sources including BBSRC, MRC and the Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre, where he served a term as a member of the IBioIC Scientific Advisory Board. Nick maintains an honorary research role at Strathclyde and is an active member of the Microbiology Society as an elected member of the Prokaryotic Division and an editor of Microbiology.

Research Interests:

  1. Genomic Diversity and stress responses of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. P. aeruginosa is an inherently antibiotic resistant pathogen and has been classified as ‘critical’ by the WHO in its list of pathogens for which new antibiotics are required. Nick’s work has contributed to international studies on the diversity of this important pathogen and current projects include the transcriptomic response of P. aeruginosa to drugs used to treat pulmonary disease, including those used to treat cystic fibrosis.
  2. Pseudomonas putida as a chassis organism for production of high value commodity chemicals. P. putida is tolerant to a wide variety of solvents, particularly those used by the plastics industry. It is ideally suited to the sustainable production of plastic monomers using synthetic biology approaches as an alternative to petrochemical feedstocks. Nick has worked closely with industry to help prioritise the systems that make P. putida such an attractive bioproduction strain.

Please contact Nick if you are interested in a PhD in either of these research areas.

Nick has taught on IBMS accredited Biomedical Sciences degrees for over a decade.

He is module lead for:

Biochemistry (Level 4)
Medical Microbiology (Level 5)
Research Methods & Scientific Communication (Level 5)
Microbial Organisms (Level 5)


McSorley, J. C., MacFadyen, A. C., Kerr, L., & Tucker, N. P. (2022). Host lysolipid differentially modulates virulence factor expression and antimicrobial susceptibility in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Microbiology, 168(7). http://doi.org/10.1099/mic.0.001179


Kerr, L., Browning, D. F., Lemonidis, K., Salih, T., Hunter, I. S., Suckling, C. J., & Tucker, N. P. (2021). Novel antibiotic mode of action by repression of promoter isomerisation. bioRxiv, 2020.12.31.424950. http://doi.org/10.1101/2020.12.31.424950


Sydney, N., Swain, M. T., So, J. M. T., Hoiczyk, E., Tucker, N. P., & Whitworth, D. E. (2021). The Genetics of Prey Susceptibility to Myxobacterial Predation: A Review, Including an Investigation into Pseudomonas aeruginosa Mutations Affecting Predation by Myxococcus xanthus. Microbial Physiology, 1–10. http://doi.org/10.1159/000515546


Moore, M. P., Lamont, I. L., Williams, D., Paterson, S., Kukavica-Ibrulj, I., Tucker, N. P., et al. (2021). Transmission, adaptation and geographical spread of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa Liverpool epidemic strain. Microbial Genomics, 7(3). http://doi.org/10.1099/mgen.0.000511


Efthimiou, G., & Tucker, N. P. (2020). Microbes Against Humanity, a workshop game for horrible students: using a creative card game in higher education microbiology teaching. Access Microbiology, 14, 9. http://doi.org/10.1099/acmi.0.000186


O’Boyle, N., Connolly, J. P. R., Tucker, N. P., & Roe, A. J. (2020). Genomic plasticity of pathogenic Escherichia coli mediates d-serine tolerance via multiple adaptive mechanisms. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 104, 202004977. http://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2004977117


Schniete, J. K., Reumerman, R., Kerr, L., Tucker, N. P., Hunter, I. S., Herron, P. R., & Hoskisson, P. A. (2020). Differential transcription of expanded gene families in central carbon metabolism of Streptomyces coelicolorA3(2). Access Microbiology, 2(6), acmi000122. http://doi.org/10.1099/acmi.0.000122


Lemonidis, K., Salih, T. S., Dancer, S. J., Hunter, I. S., & Tucker, N. P. (2019). Emergence of an Australian-like pstS-null vancomycin resistant Enterococcus faecium clone in Scotland. PloS One, 14(6), e0218185. http://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0218185


Ward, A. C., Hannah, A. J., Kendrick, S. L., Tucker, N. P., MacGregor, G., & Connolly, P. (2018). Identification and characterisation of Staphylococcus aureus on low cost screen printed carbon electrodes using impedance spectroscopy. Biosensors & Bioelectronics, 110, 65–70.


Ainsley Beaton, Cédric Lood, Edward Cunningham-Oakes, Alison MacFadyen, Alex J Mullins, Walid El Bestawy, João Botelho, Sylvie Chevalier, Shannon Coleman, Chloe Dalzell, Stephen K Dolan, Alberto Faccenda, Maarten G K Ghequire, Steven Higgins, Alexander Kutschera, Jordan Murray, Martha Redway, Talal Salih, Ana C da Silva, Brian A Smith, Nathan Smits, Ryan Thomson, Stuart Woodcock, Martin Welch, Pierre Cornelis, Rob Lavigne, Vera van Noort, and Nicholas P Tucker. (2018). Community-led comparative genomic and phenotypic analysis of the aquaculture pathogen Pseudomonas baetica a390T sequenced by Ion semiconductor and Nanopore technologies. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 365(9), 103.


Luca Freschi, Claire Bertelli, Julie Jeukens, Matthew P Moore, Irena Kukavica-Ibrulj, Jean-Guillaume Emond-Rheault, Jérémie Hamel, Joanne L Fothergill, Nicholas P Tucker, Siobhán McClean, Jens Klockgether, Anthony de Soyza, Fiona S L Brinkman, Roger C Levesque, and Craig Winstanley. (2018). Genomic characterisation of an international Pseudomonas aeruginosa reference panel indicates that the two major groups draw upon distinct mobile gene pools. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 365(14), W16.


Ward, A. C., Hannah, A. J., Kendrick, S. L., Tucker, N. P., MacGregor, G., & Connolly, P. (2018). Identification and characterisation of Staphylococcus aureus on low cost screen printed carbon electrodes using impedance spectroscopy. Biosensors & Bioelectronics, 110, 65–70.


Jeukens, J., Freschi, L., Kukavica-Ibrulj, I., Emond-Rheault, J.-G., Tucker, N. P., & Levesque, R. C. (2017). Genomics of antibiotic-resistance prediction in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 13, 42.


Laura C McCaughey, Inokentijs Josts, Rhys Grinter, Paul White, Olwyn Byron, Nicholas P Tucker, Jacqueline M Matthews, Colin Kleanthous, Cynthia B Whitchurch, and Daniel Walker (2016) Discovery, characterization and in vivo activity of pyocin SD2, a protein antibiotic from Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Biochem J, 2016 vol. 473 (15) pp. 2345-2358.


Lemieux A-A, Jeukens J, Kukavica-Ibrulj I, Fothergill JL, Boyle B, Laroche J, Tucker NP, Winstanley C, Levesque RC. 2016. Genes Required for Free Phage Production are Essential for Pseudomonas aeruginosa Chronic Lung Infections. Journal of Infectious Diseases 213 (3): 395-402. Open Access.


Freschi L, Jeukens J, Kukavica-Ibrulj I, Boyle B, Dupont M-J, Laroche J, Larose S, Maaroufi H, Fothergill JL, Moore M, Winsor GL, Aaron SD, Barbeau J, Bell SC, Burns JL, Cámara M, Cantin A, Charette SJ, Dewar K, Déziel E, Grimwood K, Hancock REW, Harrison JJ, Heeb S, Jelsbak L, Jia B, Kenna DT, Kidd TJ, Klockgether J, Lam JS, Lamont IL, Lewenza S, Loman N, Malouin F, Manos J, McArthur AG, McKeown J, Milot J, Naghra H, Nguyen D, Pereira SK, Perron GG, Pirnay J-P, Rainey PB, Rousseau S, Santos PM, Stephenson A, Taylor V, Turton JF, Waglechner N, Williams P, Thrane SW, Wright GD, Brinkman FSL, Tucker NP, Tümmler B, Winstanley C, Levesque RC. (2015). Clinical utilization of genomics data produced by the international Pseudomonas aeruginosa consortium. Front Microbiol 6. Open Access


Johns BE, Purdy KJ, Tucker NP, Maddocks S. 2015. Phenotypic and Genotypic Characteristics of Small Colony Variants and Their Role in Chronic Infection. Microbiology Insights 8:15–23.


Ward AC, Connolly P, Tucker NP. 2014. Pseudomonas aeruginosa Can Be Detected in a Polymicrobial Competition Model Using Impedance Spectroscopy with a Novel Biosensor. PLoS ONE 9:e91732.


McCaughey LC, Grinter R, Josts I, Roszak AW, Waløen KI, Cogdell RJ, Milner J, Evans T, Kelly S, Tucker NP, Byron O, Smith B, Walker D. 2014. Lectin-Like Bacteriocins from Pseudomonas spp. Utilise D-Rhamnose Containing Lipopolysaccharide as a Cellular Receptor. PLoS Pathog 10:e1003898. Open Access.


Sangal V, Nieminen L, Weinhardt B, Raeside J, Tucker NP, Florea C-D, Pollock KG, Hoskisson PA. 2014. Diphtheria-like disease caused by toxigenic Corynebacterium ulcerans strain. Emerging Infect Dis 20:1257–1258.


Jeukens J, Boyle B, Kukavica-Ibrulj I, Ouellet MM, Aaron SD, Charette SJ, Fothergill JL, Tucker NP, Winstanley C, Levesque RC. 2014. Comparative Genomics of Isolates of a Pseudomonas aeruginosa Epidemic Strain Associated with Chronic Lung Infections of Cystic Fibrosis Patients. PLoS ONE 9:e87611.


Stewart L, Ford A, Sangal V, Jeukens J, Boyle B, Caim S, Crossman L, Hoskisson PA, Levesque R, Tucker NP. 2013. Draft genomes of twelve host adapted and environmental isolates of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and their position in the core genome phylogeny. Pathog Dis 71:20–25.


Reumerman RA, Tucker NP, Herron PR, Hoskisson PA, Sangal V. 2013. Tool for rapid annotation of microbial SNPs (TRAMS): a simple program for rapid annotation of genomic variation in prokaryotes. Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. Volume 104, Issue 3, pp 431-434.


Candelaresi M, Gumeiro A, Adamczyk K, Robb K, Bellota-Antón C, Sangal V, Munnoch JT, Greetham GM, Towrie M, Hoskisson PA, Parker AW, Tucker NP, Walsh MA, Hunt N. 2013. Bound Water is Central to Both Molecular Recognition and Function in the Catalase Enzyme. Org Biomol Chem. 2013,11, 7778-7788 IF = 3.3


Sangal V, Tucker NP, Burkovski A, Hoskisson PA. 2012. Draft genome sequence of Corynebacterium diphtheriae biovar intermedius NCTC 5011. J Bacteriol 194:4738.


Kirby R, Sangal V, Tucker NP, Zakrzewska-Czerwinska J, Wierzbicka K, Herron PR, Chu C-J, Chandra G, Fahal AH, Goodfellow M, Hoskisson PA. 2012. Draft Genome Sequence of the Human Pathogen Streptomyces somaliensis, a Significant Cause of Actinomycetoma. J Bacteriol 194:3544–3545.


Sangal V, Tucker NP, Burkovski A, Hoskisson PA. 2012. The Draft Genome Sequence of Corynebacterium diphtheriae bv. mitis NCTC 3529 Reveals Significant Diversity between the Primary Disease-Causing Biovars. J Bacteriol 194:3269.


Adamczyk K, Candelaresi M, Kania R, Robb K, Bellota-Antón C, Greetham GM, Pollard MR, Towrie M, Parker AW, Hoskisson PA, Tucker NP, Hunt NT. 2012. The effect of point mutation on the equilibrium structural fluctuations of ferric Myoglobin. Phys Chem Chem Phys 14:7411–7419.


Adamczyk K, Candelaresi M, Robb K, Gumiero A, Walsh MA, Parker AW, Hoskisson PA, Tucker NP, Hunt NT. 2012. Measuring protein dynamics with ultrafast two-dimensional infrared spectroscopy. Meas Sci Technol 23:062001.


Hunt NT, Greetham GM, Towrie M, Parker AW, Tucker NP. 2011. Relationship between protein structural fluctuations and rebinding dynamics in ferric haem nitrosyls. Biochem J 433:459–468.


Bush M, Ghosh T, Tucker N, Zhang X, Dixon R. 2010. Nitric oxide-responsive interdomain regulation targets the σ54-interaction surface in the enhancer binding protein NorR. Mol Microbiol 77:1278–1288.


Bellota-Antón C, Munnoch J, Robb K, Adamczyk K, Candelaresi M, Parker AW, Dixon R, Hutchings MI, Hunt NT, Tucker NP. 2011. Spectroscopic analysis of protein Fe-NO complexes. Biochem Soc Trans 39:1293–1298.


Bush M, Ghosh T, Tucker N, Zhang X, Dixon R. 2011. Transcriptional regulation by the dedicated nitric oxide sensor, NorR: a route towards NO detoxification. Biochem Soc Trans 39:289–293.


Tucker NP, Ghosh T, Bush M, Zhang X, Dixon R. 2010. Essential roles of three enhancer sites in sigma54-dependent transcription by the nitric oxide sensing regulatory protein NorR. Nucleic Acids Res 38:1182–1194.


Tucker NP, Le Brun NE, Dixon R, Hutchings MI. 2010. There's NO stopping NsrR, a global regulator of the bacterial NO stress response. Trends Microbiol 18:149–156.


Tucker NP, D'Autréaux B, Yousafzai FK, Fairhurst SA, Spiro S, Dixon R. 2008. Analysis of the nitric oxide-sensing non-heme iron center in the NorR regulatory protein. J Biol Chem 283:908–918.


D'Autréaux B, Tucker N, Spiro S, Dixon R. 2008. Characterization of the nitric oxide-reactive transcriptional activator NorR. Meth Enzymol 437:235–251.


Tucker NP, Hicks MG, Clarke TA, Crack JC, Chandra G, Le Brun NE, Dixon R, Hutchings MI. 2008. The transcriptional repressor protein NsrR senses nitric oxide directly via a [2Fe-2S] cluster. PLoS ONE 3:e3623.


Tucker NP, D'Autréaux B, Spiro S, Dixon R. 2006. Mechanism of transcriptional regulation by the Escherichia coli nitric oxide sensor NorR. Biochem Soc Trans 34:191–194.


D'Autréaux B, Tucker NP, Dixon R, Spiro S. 2005. A non-haem iron centre in the transcription factor NorR senses nitric oxide. Nature 437:769–772.


Tucker N, D'Autréaux B, Spiro S, Dixon R. 2005. DNA binding properties of the Escherichia coli nitric oxide sensor NorR: towards an understanding of the regulation of flavorubredoxin expression. Biochem Soc Trans 33:181–183.  


Tucker NP, D'Autréaux B, Studholme DJ, Spiro S, Dixon R. 2004. DNA binding activity of the Escherichia coli nitric oxide sensor NorR suggests a conserved target sequence in diverse proteobacteria. J Bacteriol 186:6656–6660.


Waddington SN, Buckley SMK, Nivsarkar M, Jezzard S, Schneider H, Dahse T, Kemball-Cook G, Miah M, Tucker N, Dallman MJ, Themis M, Coutelle C. 2003. In utero gene transfer of human factor IX to fetal mice can induce postnatal tolerance of the exogenous clotting factor. Blood 101:1359–1366.




Jeukens J, Boyle B, Tucker NP, Levesque RC. 2014. Strategy for genome sequencing analysis and assembly for comparative genomics of Pseudomonas genomes. Methods Mol Biol 1149:565–577.

MacKenzie A, Stewart L, Hoskisson PA, Tucker NP. 2014. Transcriptional analysis of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infected Caenorhabditis elegans. Methods Mol Biol 1149:607–612.

Sangal V, Nieminen L, Tucker NP, Hoskisson PA. 2014. Revolutionizing Prokaryotic Systematics Through Next-Generation Sequencing, pp. 75–101. In Methods in Microbiology. Elsevier.