Sarah Gurr

Senior Research Fellow; Chair in Food Security, Exeter University

Sarah Gurr was recently appointed to the Chair in Food Security, a post created by Exeter University in association with BBSRC and Rothamsted Research.

This new position nests within the Food Security and Research Land Alliance between the Universities of Exeter, Bristol, Bath and Cardiff and with Rothamsted. Sarah Gurr was previously Professor of Molecular Plant Pathology at Oxford and formerly President of The British Society of Plant Pathology.

She sits on BBSRC Council.

Her interests are in crop diseases (notably of rice and wheat), with particular emphasis on fungal infestations and their global movement and control. She is interested in fungal biotechnology. She has authored or co-authored over 100 publications, including a contribution to the recent Foresight report on “Biological Hazards”.

Her role is to engage with and enhance the activities of the world-leading fungal group in Biosciences, to catalyse research across the campus and to promote awareness and use of the unique Farm Platform capability at Rothamsted/North Wyke.


Journal articles

Bebber DP, Gurr SJ (In Press). Biotic interactions and climate in species distribution modelling.

Chaloner TM, Gurr SJ, Bebber DP (In Press). Geometry and evolution of the ecological niche in plant-associated microbes.

Gurr SJ, McPherson MJ, Atkinson HJ (In Press). Identification of plant genes expressed at the feeding site of the potato cyst nematode. Journal Cell Biochemistry, 56, 121-131.

Bebber DP, Field E, Heng G, Mortimer P, Holmes T, Gurr S (In Press). Many unreported crop pests and pathogens are probably already present. Global Change Biology

Chaloner TM, Gurr SJ, Bebber DP (In Press). The global burden of plant disease tracks crop yields under climate change.

Gurr SJ, Field D, Garrity G, Selengut J, Sterk P, Tatusova T, Thomson N, Ashburner M, Boore JL, Cochrane G, et al (In Press). Towards richer descriptions of our collection of genomes and metagenomes. Nature Biotechnology, 16, LBNL-60477.

Steinberg G, Schuster M, Gurr SJ, Schrader TA, Schrader M, Wood M, Early A, Kilaru S (2020). A lipophilic cation protects crops against fungal pathogens by multiple modes of action. Nat Commun, 11(1).

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