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Dr Paul Stapleton
Appointment
  • Senior Teaching Fellow
  • SoP Pharmaceutical & Bio Chemistry
  • UCL School of Pharmacy
  • Faculty of Life Sciences
Biography

Dr Stapleton started his research career under the direction of Professor Barry Cookson, initially at St. Thomas’s Hospital and then at the Central Public Health Laboratory, Colindale London, where he conducted investigations into the molecular epidemiology of staphylococci and mupirocin and triclosan resistance. In 1991, Dr Stapleton re-joined the Microbiology Department at St. Thomas’ Hospital (and for a short period at Guy’s Hospital), London, as a research assistant investigating outbreaks of hospital infections and antibiotic resistance amongst enterobacteria under the supervisions of Dr Kevin Shannon and Professor Ian Philips (later Professor Gary French). For his work on class C beta-lactamases, Dr Stapleton was awarded a PhD in Medical Microbiology from the United Medical and Dental Schools (UMDS) of Guy’s and St. Thomas’ Hospitals in 1997. After his PhD studies, he continued with his interests in beta-lactamases discovering the mobile genetic element, ISEcp1, responsible for the mobilisation of several important beta-lactamase genes. In 1999, he embarked on a post-doctoral position within the Department of Biology, University College London, investigating antimicrobial and heavy metal resistance in bacteria. Dr Stapleton joined The UCL School of Pharmacy in October 2001; he was appointed Senior Teaching Fellow in October 2004, RCUK Academic Fellow in 2006, and Lecturer in Infectious Diseases and Antimicrobial Chemotherapy in 2012. Dr Stapleton is co-ordinator and teacher of the core third year MPharm module on ‘Infectious Diseases: Aetiology, Pathology and Treatment’, which also covers immunology. He lectures on antimicrobial-related subjects within the MSc programmes in ‘Pharmacognosy’ and ‘Drug Discovery’, and specialist option modules within the MPharm. Dr Stapleton also has an honorary teaching position at the University of Hertfordshire. He is has published over forty papers, is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a member of the American Society for Microbiology and the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. Research in his laboratory is currently funded by the EPSRC.

Research Summary

Bacteria can become refractory to antimicrobial therapy through mutation, the acquisition of mobile genetic elements carrying antibiotic resistance genes (e.g. plasmids) and through specific metabolic states (e.g. persister cells within bacterial biofilms). Dr Stapleton’s research interests are aimed at investigating the biology of these processes and the development of novel agents to tackle antibiotic-resistant organisms.

Specific areas of interest are:

* Biology of plasmids and mobile genetic elements with particular emphasis on antibiotic gene capture and spread.

* Natural product inhibitors of bacterial secretion systems (particularly type IV systems).

* Anti-plasmid approaches to antimicrobial chemotherapy.

* Antimicrobial agents with multiple targets of action (antimicrobial prodrugs).

Teaching Summary

Dr Stapleton is co-ordinator and teacher of the core third year MPharm module on ‘Infectious Diseases: Aetiology, Pathology and Treatment’, which also covers immunology. He lecturers on antimicrobial-related subjects in the MSc programmes in ‘Pharmacognosy’ and ‘Drug Discovery’, and specialist option modules within the MPharm.

 

Dr Stapleton also lectures on antimicrobial agents within the School of Pharmacy at the University of Hertfordshire.

 

Academic Background
1997 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Medical Microbiology Guy's, King's and St Thomas' School of Medicine
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