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Adrian Newton

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Recent publications

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: Evaluating the resilience enhancing Potential of Endophytes for Adapting to Climate changE stress in crops (PEACE).
  • Commercial: Field trials of plant health products.
  • Technology Strategy Board: Symptomless Infection of BarLey: resIstance breediNG and integrated crop protection Strategies (SIBLINGS) (Finished December 2015).
  • European Union: Pesticide Use Reduction and Risk in the Environment (PURE) (Finished 2015).
  • European Union. NatuCrop: Development of a third generation biostimulant using natural biomolecules to reduce plant stress and realise crop potential yields (Finished 2015).
  • Technology Strategy Board and OMEX: Knowledge Transfer Partnership between The James Hutton Institute and Omex Agriculture Limited (Finished 2015).
  • 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.
  • Danish Strategic Research Council: Restricting the pathogenic effect on barley of the endophytic fungus Ramularia collo-cygni.
  • Agritech Catalyst: Breeding for Durable Resistance to Rhynchosporium.
  • Scottish Society for Crop Research: Low-input efficient production of cereal-legume mixtures for silage and feed.

Past research 

  • April 2011-present: Senior Principal Research Scientist: The James Hutton Institute – Resistance to Rhynchosporium in barley, gene deployment and pathogen variation, crop protection using resistance elicitors, IPM and sustainable crop production.
  • 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.


  • Hopkins DW, Wheatley RE, Coakley CM, Daniell TJ, Newton AC, Neilson R, 2016. Soil carbon and nitrogen and barley yield responses to repeated additions of compost and slurry. Journal of Agricultural Science (in press).
  • Wiesel L, Davis JL, Milne L, Fernandez VR, Herold MB, Middlefell Williams J, Morris J, Hedley PE, Harrower B, Newton AC, Birch PR, Gilroy EM, Hein I, 2015. A transcriptional reference map of defence hormone regulated potato responses. Nature Scientific Reports 15229. doi:10.1038/srep15229
  • Pakeman R, Karley AJ, Newton AC, Morcillo L, Brooker RW, Schoeb C, 2015. A trait-based approach to understanding crop-weed interactions. European Journal of Agronomy 70, 22-32.
  • Brooker R.W., Karley A.J., Newton A.C., Pakeman R.J., Schöb C., 2015. Facilitation and sustainable agriculture: a mechanistic approach to reconciling crop production and conservation. Functional Ecology doi: 10.1111/1365-2435.12496.
  • Wiesel L., Newton A.C., Elliot I., Booty D., Gilroy E.M., Birch P.R.J., Hein I., 2014. Molecular effects of resistance elicitors from biological origin and their potential for crop protection. Frontiers in Plant Science 5:655. doi:10.3389/fpls.2014.00655e
  • Skelsey P., Newton A.C., 2015. Future environmental and geographic risks of Fusarium head blight of wheat in Scotland. European Journal of Plant Pathology 142, 133-147.
  • Looseley M., Keith R., Guy D., Barral-Baron G., Thirugnanasambandam A., Harrap D., Werner P., Newton A.C., 2014. Genetic mapping of resistance to Rhynchosporium commune and characterisation of early infection in a winter barley mapping population. Euphytica DOI 10.1007/s10681-014-1274-2
  • Schöb C., Kerle S., Karley A.J., Morcillo L., Pakeman R.J., Newton A.C., Brooker R.W., 2015. Intra-specific genetic and composition modify species-level diversity-productivity relationships. New Phytologist 205, 720-730.
  • Looseley M., Newton A.C., 2014. Assessing the consequences of microbial infection in field trials: seen, and unseen, beneficial, parasitic and pathogenic. Agronomy 4, 302-321.
  • George T., MacKenzie B., Hallett P., Newton A.C., Valentine T., 2014. Field soil platforms for characterisation of soil, nutrient, cultivation – genotype interactions. Agronomy doi: 10.3390/agronomy40x0000x
  • Skelsey P., Newton A.C., 2014. Scale-dependent assessment of relative disease resistance to plant pathogens. Agronomy 4, 178-190. doi:10.3390/agronomy4020178
  • George T.S., Brown L.K., Ramsay L., White P.J., Newton A.C., Bengough A.G., Russell J., Thomas W.T.B., 2014. Understanding the genetic control and physiological traits associated with rhizosheath production by barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). New Phytologist doi: 10.1111/nph.12786
  • 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.

PDF file: Adrian Newton full publication list (321 KB)

Scientific posters/conferences

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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  • Phone: +44 (0)844 928 5428
  • Craigiebuckler Aberdeen AB15 8QH Scotland
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Registered office: The James Hutton Institute, Invergowrie Dundee DD2 5DA. Charity No SCO41796

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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.