Sainsbury Laboratory

The Sainsbury Laboratory (TSL) is a world-leading research institute working on the science of plant-microbe interactions.

TSL has developed an enviable reputation for the quality of its fundamental scientific research but is also committed to delivering science solutions that reduce crop losses to important diseases.

The Sainsbury Laboratory favours daring, long-term research and has state-of-the- art technologies and support services to enable cutting-edge science. The Laboratory provides an outstanding training environment that prepares postgraduate students, postdoctoral scientists and early career project leaders to excel in their careers. Many scientists who have passed through the Laboratory have continued their careers in prestigious laboratories and institutes around the world.

The Laboratory’s main goals are to: Make fundamental discoveries in the science of plant-microbe interactions. Build on fundamental scientific research and deliver science solutions that reduce crop losses to important diseases. Provide an outstanding training environment that prepares scientists who pass through the Laboratory to excel in their careers.

Research topics include: plant disease resistance genes, the biology of pathogen effector proteins, innate immune recognition in plants, signalling and cellular changes during plant-microbe interactions, plant and pathogen genomics, and biotechnological approaches to crop disease resistance. From its inception, TSL has been generously supported by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and TSL project leaders receive competitively awarded funding from BBSRC, EU and other research grant funding bodies.

Each of our scientific groups has research projects which expand on fundamental research from the laboratory and use it with the aim of reducing worldwide losses to crop diseases. This applied aspect of the laboratory’s research is encompassed within the TSL+ programme. Current TSL+ projects include the discovery, engineering and deployment of novel immune receptors in crops, as well as genome editing tools that will enable the generation of novel alleles for crop improvement.

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