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John Jones

Staff picture: John Jones
Cell and Molecular Sciences
Cell and Molecular Sciences
Head of Department
+44 (0)344 928 5428 (*)

The James Hutton Institute
Dundee DD2 5DA
Scotland UK


John is a plant nematologist who has worked on genomics and host-parasite interactions of plant-parasitic nematodes for over 25 years.


Current research interests

  • Functional analysis of effectors of plant parasitic nematodes.
  • Genomics of the potato cyst nematode Globodera pallida
  • Horizontal gene transfer in plant parasitic nematodes.
  • Characterisation and control of potato cyst nematodes in East Africa
  • Moelcular mechanisms underpinning hatch in potato cyst nematodes

John leads the Institute's Cell and Molecular Sciences group, and has a joint appointment at the University of St Andrews.

John is part of the Dundee Effector Consortium.

Past research

  • Work in our group is focused on identification and characterisation of secreted effector proteins of plant parasitic nematodes, with a particular focus on effectors that suppress host defences. 
  • Our work uses genomics tools to identify and characterise effectors.  We have been involved in projects sequencing genomes and transcriptomes of a range of plant-parasitic nematodes.
  • One unexpected finding that has emerged from this work is that genes important in the parasitic process seem to have been acquired by horizontal gene transfer, from bacteria or fungi, in all groups of plant parasitic nematodes studied to date.
  • Current work is aimed at functional characterisation of proteins we suspect are important in generating a susceptible response or suppressing host defences in plants.


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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.