Prateek Sharma

Prateek Sharma

School of Biosciences

Contact details

School of Biosciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

PhD Title: Controlling toxin production in Enteric bacteria

Supervisors: Dr David C Grainger

The intestines of humans and animals are home to trillions of microorganisms including many different species of bacteria. Most of these bacteria are harmless and actually benefit the host organism. However, some bacteria have evolved molecular systems that allow them to attack unfortunate hosts. Thus, these harmful “pathogenic” bacteria cause severe disease that result in millions of deaths every year. The Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC), Vibrio cholerae and Yersinia enterocolitica all produce the same “heat-stable” toxin that directly targets epithelial cells in the host intestine. This toxin forces the host cells to excrete large amounts of water and electrolytes. He will be determining the molecular mechanisms via which toxin production is regulated in these different bacteria. He is presently working on the most potent ST toxin, and looking over its regulation. 


Bachelors of Technology in Genetic Engineering
Masters of Science in Molecular Life Sciences (yet to be awarded)


Prateek Sharma studied Genetic Engineering at the SRM University, Chennai, India. While at Chennai he worked as a Student Research Assistant at the Genomics Laboratory of SRM University and developed his interest in Plant Genetics and then did his undergraduate project at the National Centre for Biological Sciences- TIFR Bangalore, India where he got interested in the Molecular Microbiology and Plant defense. After his first degree he moved to Germany for a Masters course in Molecular Life Sciences at the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena. And also worked there as a part time researcher at the Department of Genetics at the University and also at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology where he studied defense signaling as a major area of research. The expertise he gained in various laboratories build a major interest in him towards becoming a scientist so he has taken a step further towards the PhD (with Darwin Research Scholarship) at the Institute of Microbiology and infection to study Molecular Genetics of Bacteria.


Molecular Genetics of Bacteria and Plants. Controlling diseases by regulation of Pathogenesis factors and effectively studying defense signaling in the host.

Other activities

Prateek Sharma is an active member of various scientific committees such as Indian Science Congress Association and helped the scientific committees in arranging the 98th Indian Science Congress at SRM University, India. He is also the member of Association of Food Scientists and Technologists, CFTRI India. Engaging in Society of General Microbiology. And as a part in the University he is also a member of the College Biosciences Graduate School Research Committee.
As a helping hand he is the volunteer at the Help Age India foundation and also the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Charity Birmingham.


1) The microbial communities found in an antibiotic and antifungal Tree “Azadirachta indica” in MiCom 2012 at Jena School of Microbial Communication, Jena, Germany
2) Biochemistry and characterization of microbial communities of “Azadirachta indica” in Plant Science Student Conference at Leibniz Institute of Plant Biochemistry, Halle, Germany
3) miRNA 399 helps in regulation of Phosphate in Higher Plants at Friedrich Schiller University, Jena, Germany