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Gareth McVicker

Gareth McVicker

Lecturer/Senior Lecturer

School of Science & Technology

Staff Group(s)


Dr. Gareth McVicker is a lecturer and researcher in microbiology at Nottingham Trent University and is based at the Clifton Campus. Dr. McVicker teaches on various modules at all degree stages, in the topics of general microbiology, microbial genetics and molecular pathogenesis. His research focuses on the maintenance and transmission of mobile genetic elements encoding virulence and resistance traits in bacteria.

Career overview

Dr. McVicker obtained his PhD from the University of Kent with Dr. Ian Blomfield working on regulation of virulence gene expression in E. coli. He went on to complete a postdoctoral position at the University of Sheffield with Simon Foster, working on the impact of antimicrobial resistance on systemic Staphylococcus aureus infection. After this, Dr. McVicker studied the mechanisms underlying differential virulence plasmid stability in Shigella with Christoph Tang at the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford.

Research areas

Dr. McVicker’s research focusses on the contribution of toxin-antitoxin modules and other stability systems to both the vertical and horizontal transfer of mobile genetic elements within bacterial populations, using pathogenic E. coli as a model. Of particular interest are enteropathogens with unusual, diverse or poorly-characterised plasmids, such as E. coli O157 and O104.

External activity

Member of the Microbiology Society (

Sponsors and collaborators

Current contacts and collaborators include:

Ian Blomfield, University of Kent

Christoph Tang, University of Oxford

Public Health England


Deletion of toxin-antitoxin systems in the evolution of Shigella sonnei as a host-adapted pathogen. McVicker G and Tang CM, Nature Microbiology, 2016, 2, 16204

Characterisation of Shigella Spa33 and Thermotoga FliM/N reveals a new model for C-ring assembly in T3SS. McDowell MA, Marcoux J, McVicker G, Johnson S, Fong YH, Stevens R, Bowman LAH, Degiacomi MT, Yan J, Wise A, Friede ME, Benesch JLP, Deane JE, Tand CM, Robinson CV and Lea SM, Molecular Microbiology, 2016, 99 (4), 749–766

Clonal expansion during Staphylococcus aureus infection dynamics reveals the effect of antibiotic intervention. McVicker G, Prajsnar TK, Williams A, Wagner NL, Boots M, Renshaw SA and Foster SJ, PLOS Pathogens, 2014, 10 (2)

RfaH suppresses small RNA MicA inhibition of fimB expression in Escherichia coli K-12. Moores A, Chipper-Keating S, Sun L, McVicker G, Wales L, Gashi K and Blomfield IC, Journal of Bacteriology, 2014, 196 (1), 148–156

A privileged intraphagocyte niche is responsible for disseminated infection of Staphylococcus aureus in a zebrafish model. Prajsnar TK, Hamilton R, Garcia-Lara J, McVicker G, Williams A, Boots M, Foster SJ and Renshaw SA, Cellular Microbiology, 14 (10), 1600–1619

SlyA protein activates fimB gene expression and type 1 fimbriation in Escherichia coli K-12. McVicker G, Sun L, Sohanpal BK, Gashi K, Williamson RA, Plumbridge J and Blomfield IC, Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2011, 286 (37), 32026–32035

See all of Gareth McVicker's publications...

Press expertise

    • Food poisoning outbreaks, including E. coli
    • Genetic causes of the spread of antibiotic resistance
    • Bacterial genetics - and how bacteria are able to cause disease

Course(s) I teach on

  • Student using science lab
    Postgraduate taught / Professional | Full-time / Part-time / Sandwich | 2020