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Andrew Love

Cell and Molecular Sciences
Cell and Molecular Sciences
Research Leader
+44 (0)1382 568 863

The James Hutton Institute
Dundee DD2 5DA
Scotland UK


Professional qualifications

  • BSc (Hons) Cell Biology (University of Glasgow)
  • PhD Molecular plant virology (University of Glasgow)
  • MSB
  • CBiol

Measures of esteem

  • Frontiers in Plant Science Review Editor.
  • Scientific Advisory Board of the Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre.
  • Advisory Board Member of Current Pharmaceutical Biotechnology Journal.
  • Honorary Senior Lecturer at Glasgow University.
  • Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre grant reviewer.
  • Association of Biologists (virology) management committee member.
  • Scottish Synthetic Biology steering group member.
  • EU COST Action on Molecular Farming management board member.
  • Invited peer reviewer of research grants and publications.
  • PhD examiner.
  • Invited speaker.

Current research interests

Production of novel diagnostics and vaccine candidates using plants, bacteria and nanotechnology.

My team have produced completely new platform technologies which have been exploited in conjunction with partners at the Moredun Research Institute (MRI) to develop next generation vaccines and diagnostic devices against Sheep Scab Mite (Psoroptes ovis), a globally important livestock pathogen which is difficult to monitor and treat using conventional approaches. Our collaboration and utilization of complemetary technologies aim to bring this pathogen under control.

Circular bioeconomy, revalorization of waste streams and development of new biotechnologies.

My group has been collaborating with CelluComp, a company which makes nanocellulose from waste vegetable matter. This material has outstanding physical robustness, is chemically stable and can be produced as sheets, gels, slurries and can be woven and molded. Using our technologies we have been ascribing these formulations with different reactivities and functionalities; creating materials which have applications as bioreactors (such as conversion of waste sugars into more rare and valuable sugars), antibacterial coatings, bone repair substrates and chemical catalysis.

Characterization of virus structures and their utilization in defining spectroscopic methods and developing non-infectious and biosafe scaffolds which are decorated with functional groups.

We have utilized our understanding of virus structure to produce virus coat proteins which can self-assemble into virus-like particles (VLPs) which are non-infectious as they do not contain nucleic acid or genomes. Using these systems we have produced a candidate vaccine against Bovine papillomavirus and have also made many other functional VLPs which can sequester and deposit metals (with potential for producing new metal nanomaterials) and promote bone mineral deposition. We also collaborate with Glasgow University, who are using such virus and VLP structures to elaborate a new highly sensitive spectroscopic method (super chiral plasmonic polarimetery).

Plant defence mechanisms and their suppression by invading pathogens

In order for a pathogen to successfully infect plants and cause disease, it has to overcome and/or evade a large variety of host defence mechanisms. My particular interest is in how viruses are able to invade host plants.

Understanding how viruses can “shut down” and evade plant defence mechanisms will allow us to try and develop strategies leading to broad spectrum virus resistance in crop species.
I have recently collaborated with Dr Joel Milner (University of Glasgow) on how Cauliflower mosaic virus is able to overcome plant defence mechanisms by producing a single protein which targets and blocks most of the major defence pathways. This not only permits virus invasion but also renders the plant highly susceptible to infection by a variety of other pathogens, even those pathogens which would not normally infect those plants.

I am also currently collaborating with Professor Taliansky, and Dr Stuart MacFarlane on elucidating the plant defence modulating proteins of other plant viruses.

Involvement of nuclear domains and proteins in plant responsees to virus infections and environmental cues.

I collaborate with Professor Michael Taliansky in studying the role of Cajal bodies and the nucleolus in modulating cell function and plant responses to biotic and abiotic stress.


Recent funding as PI or Co-I

IBioIC (2019-2020). Novel antimicrobials.

Genomia Fund (2019-2020). Reduction of acrylamide in food.

Genomia Fund (2017- 2019). Surface display platforms for vaccines and diagnostics.

IBioIC (2017- 2019). New bioinspired 3d nanoplatforms for green biocatalysts.

Genomia Fund (2016- 2017). Virus derived surface display platforms for vaccines and diagnostics.

EPSRC (2016- 2018). Mapping the mesoscale structural landscape using "sculpted" chiral plasmonic fields. Awarded via a Glasgow University subcontract.

Scottish Government RESAS RD2.2.4 (2016- 2021). Novel Diagnostic tools.

Scottish Government RESAS RD2.2.5 (2016- 2021). Novel Vaccines.

Genomia fund (2015- 2016). Production of novel antimicrobials.

Innovate UK (2015- 2016). Functionalized 3d nanomaterials.

DEFRA (2014- 2015). Generation of virus-like particles and nanoparticles as carriers for vaccines against sheep scab mite.

Genomia fund (2012- 2013) Novel platform technology for green biosynthesis of nanoparticles.

SPARK award (2013). Next generation nanomaterials and nanodevices.



  • Love, A.; Taliansky, M.; McGeachy, K.; Bukharova, T.; Streetley, J.; Bhella, D. (2023) 185 angstrom resolution cryoEM reconstruction of tobacco mosaic virus, Publication of CryoEM data on EMDB database.

Printed from /staff/andrew-love on 12/04/24 04:03:40 PM

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.