Dr Alexandra Shaw leads the Group A Streptococcus research area within the Streptococcal and Hib group in the Division of Bacteriology. She has a longstanding interest in vaccine development in Gram positive bacteria, especially investigating novel vaccination formulations and delivery. Her projects at the NIBSC investigate multicomponent protein vaccines and innovative methods towards producing effective glycoconjugate vaccines against Group A Streptococcus in collaboration with Professor Brendan Wren (LSHTM) and Dr Helge Dorfmueller (Dundee University). The team are also investigating the mucosal immune response to Group A Streptococcus infection and vaccination, in collaboration with Dr Thushan de Silva (Sheffield University).
Prior to her fellowship at the NIBSC, Allie obtained a BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry from Imperial College London and completed a PhD in Molecular Microbiology in the Division of Cell and Molecular Biology at Imperial College London investigating cell wall proteins of C. difficile in collaboration with Novartis Vaccines (now GSK) in Siena, Italy. During a postdoctoral position at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) she continued her work investigating sortase and cell wall proteins of C. difficile, as well as coordinating a multicentre study to sequence and characterise strains from Clade 3 of C. difficile (RT023).
Allie is currently involved in projects in collaboration with LSHTM, Dundee University and Sheffield University. A PhD Studentship in collaboration with LSHTM is currently ongoing and a student from Imperial College London has previously been involved with projects within the team. She is open to new collaboration opportunities or students interested in projects for research experience.
Shaw HA, M.D. Preston, K.E.W. Vendrik, M.D. Cairns, H.P. Browne, R.A. Stabler, M.J.T. Crobach, J. Corver, H. Pituch, A. Ingebretsen, M. Pirmohamed, A. Faulds-Pain, E. Valiente, T.D. Lawley, N.F. Fairweather, E.J. Kuijper, and B.W. Wren. “The recent emergence of a highly related virulent Clostridium difficile clade with unique characteristics.” Lancet Infectious Diseases, 2020 Apr; 26(4): 492–498. doi: 10.1016/j.cmi.2019.09.004. PMID: 31525517
Shaw HA, Khodadoost L, Preston MD, Corver J, Mullany P, Wren BW. “Clostridium difficile Clade 3 (RT023) have a modified cell surface and contain a large transposable island with novel cargo.” Sci Rep. 2019 Oct 25;9(1):15330. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-51628-5. PMID: 31653906
Shaw HA, Alexandra Faulds-Pain, Steven Kellner, Susan Brockmeier, Brendan W. Wren. “The Streptococcos suis sortases SrtB and SrtF are essential for disease in pigs.” Microbiology, 2019 Feb;165(2):163-173. doi: 10.1099/mic.0.000752. PMID: 30543506
Shaw HA, Peltier J, Wren BW, Fairweather NF. “Disparate subcellular location of putative sortase substrates in Clostridium difficile.” Sci Rep. 2017 Aug 23;7(1):9204. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-08322-1. PMID: 28835650
Roberts CH, Shaw HA, Ferguson N, Holland M, Wren BW, Stabler RA. “Draft Genome Sequence of Robinsoniella peoriensis 6600698, a Confounder of Clostridium difficile Diagnosis.” Genome Announc. 2016 Nov 17;4(6). pii: e01275-16. doi: 10.1128/genomeA.01275-16. PMID: 27856584
Shaw HA, Peltier J, Couchman EC, Dawson LF, Yu L, Choudhary JS, Kaever V, Wren BW, Fairweather NF. Cyclic diGMP regulates production of sortase substrates of Clostridium difficile and their surface exposure through ZmpI protease-mediated cleavage. J Biol Chem. 2015 Oct 2;290(40):24453-69. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M115.665091. Epub 2015 Aug 17. PMID: 26283789
Willing SE, Candela T, Shaw HA, Seager Z, Mesnage S, Fagan RP, Fairweather NF. Clostridium difficile surface proteins are anchored to the cell wall using CWB2 motifs that recognise the anionic polymer PSII. Mol Microbiol. 2015 May;96(3):596-608. doi: 10.1111/mmi.12958. Epub 2015 Mar 6. PMID: 25649385
Tulli L, Marchi S, Petracca R, Shaw HA, Fairweather NF, Scarselli M, Soriani M, Leuzzi R. “CbpA: a novel surface exposed adhesin of Clostridium difficile targeting human collagen.” Cell Microbiol. 2013 Oct;15(10):1674-87. doi: 10.1111/cmi.12139. Epub 2013 Apr 11. PMID: 23517059
Emerson JE, Reynolds CB, Fagan RP, Shaw HA, Goulding D, Fairweather NF. “A novel genetic switch controls phase variable expression of CwpV, a Clostridium difficile cell wall protein.” Mol Microbiol. 2009 Nov;74(3):541-56. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2958.2009.06812.x. Epub 2009 Jul 28. PMID: 19656296