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Adrian Newton

Staff picture: Adrian Newton
Cell and Molecular Sciences
Cell and Molecular Sciences
Cereal Pathologist
+44 (0)344 928 5428 (*)

The James Hutton Institute
Dundee DD2 5DA
Scotland UK


Adrian Newton is a cereal pathologist by training but his current research spans broader aspects of arable crops in the context of integrated crop management. His first degree was in Agricultural Botany from the University of Reading, followed by a PhD in Genetics from the University of Birmingham. His PhD and subsequent post-doc work at Birmingham were on the population biology of Puccinia striiformis (yellow rust) and Phaeosphaeria nodorum (Stagonospora nodorum formerly Septoria nodorum; glume blotch) on wheat and barley. Moving to the former Scottish Crop Research Institute he focussed on Blumeria graminis (formerly Erysiphe graminis; powdery mildew) and Rhynchosporium commune (formerly Rhynchosporium secalis; rhynchosporium or scald) on barley. This work continued his interest in pathogen population biology but focussed more on disease control through resistance, tolerance, exploitation of in-crop diversity and the development of resistance elicitors as crop protectants. Other interests included adaptation to climate change in plant pathology.

Current research interests

Adrian’s research interests in cereal pathogens continue, including Ramularia collo-cygni (Ramularia Leaf Spot). The crop diversity interest has taken more of an ecological focus working with Hutton colleagues and others, and has encompassed intercropping, especially cereal-legume combinations for both biomass (wholecrop) and grain. His IPM interests in general have included soil cultivation, particularly the effects of non-inversion versus inversion tillage. The particular approach of direct drilling or conservation tillage and it’s farming systems context are another current area of interest and exciting developments.

Some links to previous areas of work: Epidemiology, crop protection and resistance deployment; Resistance elicitors; Analysing epidemic spatial trends and local competition effects in heterogeneous vegetation and cultivar mixtures in general.

Adrian is a key staff member leading Integrated Pest and Disease Management (IPM) research at the Institute. For details of ongoing IPM research areas and projects, please visit the IPM@hutton website.

He is also honoured to be a Visiting Professor of Cereal Pathology at SRUC, Edinburgh; an editor for Plant Pathology; a Member of the Association for Crop Protection in Northern Britain Standing Committee and Programme Committee and its Treasurer; a Member of HGCA Barley, Oats and Other cereals Recommended List Committee; a Member of Scottish Variety Consultative Committee (Cereals); a Member of the International Committee for the International Workshop on Barley Leaf Diseases; a Member of the Scottish Society for Crop Research - Combinable and Energy Crops Committee; and an Associate of the Centre for Environmental Change and Human Resilience.

Current research grants activities

  • Scottish Government Strategic Research Programme 2016-2021, Theme 2 – Productive and Sustainable Land Management and Rural Economies. Research Deliverables: Integrated Pest Management (RD2.1.6), Novel Crops (2.1.8), Sustainable Soil and Water Management (RD2.3.4), Integrated Management Systems (RD2.3.9)
  • EU 2020: SFS-2-2016 DIVERSify– Designing InnoVative plant teams for Ecosystem Resilience and agricultural Sustainability
  • EU 2020: SFS-26-2016 TRUE– Transition paths to sustainable legume-based systems in Europe
  • HGCA Soil Management call: Platforms to test and demonstrate sustainable soil management: integration of major UK field experiments (completed 2017)
  • AHDB Horticulture PhD studentship: Integrated protection of horticultural crops through enhancing endogenous defence mechanisms (completed 2017)
  • AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds PhD studentship: Introgressing Resilience and Resource Use Efficiency Traits from Scots Bere to Elite Barley Lines (REBEL)
  • Royal Horticultural Society / Mylnefield Trust PhD studentship: Benign Enhancement Of Natural Defences: BEYOND
  • Danish Strategic Research Council: Restricting the pathogenic effect on barley of the endophytic fungus Ramularia collo-cygni (PhD studentship)
  • Innovate UK.  Breeding for durable resistance to Rhynchosporium (DRRUM)
  • EU ENDURE network
  • RESAS Innovation: Biocontrol for plant and human pathogens on horticultural produce (completed 2018).

Scientific posters/conferences

Printed from /staff/adrian-newton on 25/08/19 03:21:49 AM

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.