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Adrian Newton

Staff picture: Adrian Newton
Cell and Molecular Sciences
+44 (0)844 928 5428 (*)

The James Hutton Institute
Dundee DD2 5DA
Scotland UK

Current research interests 

Current research grants activities

  • Scottish Government: Animal/Plant Health and Disease and Animal Welfare, Theme 6, workpackage 4: Prevention and control of important endemic and new diseases of plants. RD6.4.1: Increased understanding of the epidemiology of important pest and pathogens including a better understanding of the factors driving population evolution and the emergence of new strains or other important factors (e.g. changing environmental conditions) responsible for disease outbreaks. RD6.4.4: Strategies for controlling increased disease risks arising from global change and reduced chemical availability. Integrated disease management systems that control pests and pathogens but also enhance production and improve/maintain resource efficiency. Identification of technical and socioeconomic barriers to the implementation of such strategies.
  • Scottish Government: Centre of Expertise Climate Change: Risk and Uncertainty Workstream. Agriculture: Crops and livestock Workstrand.
  • Commercial: Field trials of plant health products.
  • Technology Strategy Board: Symptomless Infection of BarLey: resIstance breediNG and integrated crop protection Strategies (SIBLINGS).
  • European Union: Pesticide Use Reduction and Risk in the Environment (PURE).
  • Technology Strategy Board and OMEX: Knowledge Transfer Partnership between The James Hutton Institute and Omex Agriculture Limited.
  • BBSRC Crop Improvement Research Club (CIRC): Fungal effectors as activators of novel resistances in cereals.
  • HGCA Soil Management call: Platforms to test and demonstrate sustainable soil management: integration of major UK field experiments.
  • HDC: Use of Plant Defence Elicitors to Provide Induced Resistance Protection in Brassica and Allium Crops.
  • HDC/AHDB studentship: Integrated protection of horticultural crops through enhancing endogenous defence mechanisms.

Past research 

  • April 2011-present: Senior Principal Research Scientist: The James Hutton Institute – Resistance to Rhynchosporium, and Ramularia in barley, gene deployment and pathogen variation.
  • 2005-April 2011: Principal Research Scientist: Plant Pathology Programme, SCRI – Resistance to Rhynchosporium, and Ramularia in barley, gene deployment and pathogen variation.
  • 2001-2005: Programme Leader/Co-Leader: Host-Parasite Co-Evolution, SCRI – Resistance to Rhynchosporium in barley, variation in the pathogen populations and heterogeneous gene deployment.
  • 1994-2001: Principal Research Scientist: Fungal and Bacterial Plant Pathology Department, SCRI – Resistance to mildew and Rhynchosporium in barley, variation in the pathogen populations and resistance elicitors.
  • 1985-1994: Senior Scientific Officer: Mycology and Bacteriology Department, SCRI – Resistance to mildew in barley and variation in the pathogen populations.
  • 1982-1985: Research Fellow: Department of Genetics, University of Birmingham, UK. Genetics of Septoria nodorum.
  • 1979-1982: PhD: Department of Genetics, University of Birmingham, UK. Genetics of Puccinia striiformis and Septoria nodorum.
  • 1977-1978: Research Assistant: Department of Plant Science, University of Western Ontario, Canada. Genetics of Ustilago violacea.


  • BSc Hons (Agricultural Botany), Reading, UK, 1979
  • PhD (Genetics), Birmingham, UK, 1982

External Duties

  • Visiting Professor at SRUC, Edinburgh.
  • Editor for Plant Pathology.
  • Honorary Lecturer, University of Dundee.
  • Member of the Association for Crop Protection in Northern Britain Standing Committee and Programme Committee.
  • Member of HGCA Barley, Oats and Other cereals Recommended List Committee.
  • Member of Scottish Variety Consultative Committee (Cereals).
  • Scottish Society for Crop Research - Combinable and Energy Crops Committee.
  • Chairman, International Workshop on Barley Leaf Blights International Committee.


  • Matthews, R.B., Rivington, M., Muhammed, S., Newton, A.C., Hallett, P.D. 2012. Adapting crops and cropping systems to future climates to ensure food security: The role of crop modelling. Global Food Security. (
  • Bingham, I.J., Hoad, S.P., Thomas, W.T.B., Newton, A.C. 2012. Yield response to fungicide of spring barley genotypes differing in canopy structure. Field Crops Research 139, 9‐19.
  • Newton, A.C., Torrance, L., Holden, N., Toth, I., Cooke, D.E.L., Blok, V., Gilroy, E.M. 2012. Climate change and defence against pathogens in plants. Advances in Applied Microbiology 81, 89‐132.
  • Zhan, J., Yang, L., Zhu, W., Newton, A.C. 2012. Pathogen populations evolve to greater race complexity in agricultural systems - evidence from analysis of Rhynchosporium secalis virulence data. PLoS One 7(6): e38611.
  • Newton, A.C., Guy, D.C., Bengough, A.G., Gordon, D.C., McKenzie, B.M., Sun, B., Valentine, T., Hallett, P.D. 2012. Soil tillage effects on the efficacy of cultivar and their mixtures in winter barley. Field Crops Research 128, 91‐100.
  • Walters, D., Avrova, A., Bingham, I.J., Burnett, F.J., Fountaine, J., Havis, N.D., Hoad, S.P., Hughes, G., Looseley, M., Oxley, S.J.P., Renwick, A., Topp, C.F.E., Newton, A.C. 2012. Control of foliar diseases in barley: towards an integrated approach. European Journal of Plant Pathology 133, 33‐73.
  • Looseley, M.E., Newton, A.C., Atkins, S.D., Fitt, B.D.L., Fraije, B., Thomas, W.T.B., Keith, R., Lynott, J., Harrap, D. 2012. Genetic basis of control of Rhynchosporium secalis infection and symptom expression in barley. Euphytica 184, 47-56.
  • Newton, A.C., Guy, D.C. 2011. Scale and spatial structure effects on the outcome of barley cultivar mixture trials for disease control. Field Crops Research 123, 74-79. 
  • Newton, A.C., Flavell, A.J., George, T.S., Leat, P., Mullholland, B., Ramsay, L., Revoredo‐Giha, C., Russell, J., Steffenson, B., Swanston, J.S., Thomas, W.T.B., Waugh, R., White, P.J., Bingham, I.J. 2011. Barley: a resilient crop? Strengths and weaknesses in the context of food security. Food Security 3, 141‐178. 
  • Newton, A.C., Johnson, S.N., Gregory, P.J. 2011. Implications of climate change on diseases, crop yields and food security. Euphytica 179, 3‐18.
  • Chakraborty, S., Newton, A.C. 2011. Climate change, plant diseases and food security, an overview. Plant Pathology 60, 2-14.
  • Thirugnanasambandam, A., Wright, K., Havis, N., Whisson, S., Newton, A.C. 2011. Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of the barley pathogen Ramularia collo-cygni with fluorescent marker tags and live tissue imaging of infection development. Plant Pathology 60, 929-937.

PDF file: Adrian Newton full publication list (318 KB)

Scientific/Conference Posters

[file] Barley cultivar mixtures in theory and practice 56.81 KB
[file] Disease resistance mapping in spring barley 372.11 KB
[file] The effect of inoculum pressure fertiliser and component number on severity of mildew and scald yield and malting quality in mixtures of barley cultivars 156.62 KB
[file] Resistance elicitors as crop protectants 197.19 KB
[file] The effects of spatial scaling in host heterogeneity on epidemics of a plant pathogen 314.04 KB
[file] How do cultivar mixtures perform under defined soil tillage regimes? 411.09 KB
[file] Adaptation of cropping systems in northern latitudes to environmental change: consequences for food security 1.67 MB
[file] Assessing the contribution of component cultivars to malting quality yield and disease in complex cultivar mixtures 917.88 KB
[file] Deployment of disease resistance in barley: theoretical expectations and interactions with cultivation methods 875.34 KB
[file] Mapping Resistance to Spots and Blotches in Spring Barley 189.35 KB
[file] Resistance to Spots and Blotches in Spring Barley 197.33 KB
[file] Mitigating and adapting to climate change
Research at SCRI for northern Britain
560.65 KB
[file] Do mixed cultivars outperform monocultures under defined soil tillage regimes? 289.42 KB
[file] Potassium deficiency and defence signalling 1.72 MB
[file] Adaping our crop and soil systems to climate change 755.92 KB
[file] Potassium Deficiency and JA-dependent Responses to Biotic Stress in Barley 1.33 MB
[file] Role of Seed-Borne Infection in Rhynchosporium Epidemics in Barley 719.31 KB
[file] Potassium Deficiency and JA-dependent Responses to Biotic Stress in Barley 216.78 KB
[file] Characterization of the barley (Hordeum vulgare) phyllosphere 407.22 KB
[file] Characterisation of the barley phyllosphere and its interactions with Rhynchosporium secalis 253.9 KB
[file] Effect of a potato bacterial pathogen on barley fungal diseases 252.53 KB
[file] Rhynchosporium secalis cell wall proteins
133.43 KB

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The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.