Photo of Jonathan A. G. Cox
  • Phone01212045011
  • Aston University, Aston Triangle

    B4 7ET Birmingham

20122019
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Personal profile

Research Interests

My research interests surround the discovery of new antibiotics and identifying the exact mechanism by which those antibiotics kill bacteria. Finding new “mechanisms of action” reveals new drug targets that can be exploited in the battle against antimicrobial resistance (AMR). AMR accounts for around 700,000 deaths per annum globally and that number is predicted to rise to 10 million by 2050. The current economic burden of AMR is estimated to be at least €1.5 billion per year in the EU. New antibiotics and an improved understanding of how to use them will help to slow the progression of AMR, saving countless lives in the future.

In my current role, I lead the Mycobacterial Research Group at Aston University. My group consists of three PhD students and one post-doctoral researcher, along with a number of master’s students and undergraduate students who decide to study with us. We are a multidisciplinary team with a diverse skill-set, spanning microbiology, biochemistry, molecular genetics, structural biology and drug discovery. Our main focus is to study the physiology of various pathogenic mycobacteria (such as Mycobacterium abscessus, Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium bovis) and to discover new ways to treat infections. By using the physiology to inform antibiotic drug discovery, we can develop new treatment regimens that are able to overcome factors contributing to antibiotic resistance in these highly antibiotic-tolerant bacteria. We collaborate with several other research groups around the UK, including The University of Bradford, University of Hertfordshire and University of Plymouth, as well as clinicians at Birmingham Children’s Hospital. I was recently interviewed by the Microbiology Society about my research. That interview is available here.  

I also teach at Aston and currently lead teaching for first year microbiology on our Biomedical Science, Biology and Biochemistry courses, as well as contributing to teaching across other parts of our program. I currently serve as Biomedical Science Top Up Modules Course Director. 

I regularly engage with the press to comment on news stories and issues related to microbiology, infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance. I have experience of both written and broadcast media. Further details of my media work is available here

 

Qualifications

B.Sc. (Hons) Medical Biochemistry

Ph.D. Molecular Microbiology and Drug Discovery

General

I joined Aston University in 2016 as a Lecturer in Microbiology in the School of Life & Health Sciences (LHS). Prior to that, I was a Research Fellow funded by the Tres Cantos Open Lab Foundation (TCOLF), operated by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Madrid under their Diseases in the Developing World directive. I was also previously a Research Associate in the Institute of Microbiology and Infection (IMI) at the University of Birmingham immediately after completing my Ph.D. in Molecular Microbiology and Drug Discovery under the supervision of Prof. Gurdyal Besra. Before that, I completed an undergraduate degree in Medical Biochemistry at University of Birmingham, where my interest in the biology and biochemistry of microorganisms began.

Membership of Professional Bodies

Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA)

Fellow of the Institute of Biomedical Science (FIBMS)

Member of the Acid Fast Club, UK

Member of the Royal Society of Biology (MRSB)

Member of the Biochemical Society

Member of the Microbiology Society

Member of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC)

Employment

  • Lecturer in Microbiology, School of Life and Health Sciences, Aston University 
  • Tres Cantos Open Lab Foundation (TCOLF) Research Fellow, GSK, Madrid 
  • Post-doctoral Research Associate, University of Birmingham 

Contact Details

Tel: +44 (0) 121 204 5011
Email: j.a.g.cox@aston.ac.uk 
Room: MB438C
Lab: MB327

External positions

Associate PhD Supervisor

Sep 2018Sep 2021

Associate PhD Supervisor, University of Hertfordshire

Jul 2018Jul 2021

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Jonathan A. G. Cox is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Mycobacterium tuberculosis Medicine & Life Sciences
Tuberculosis Medicine & Life Sciences
Mycobacterium bovis Medicine & Life Sciences
Drug Discovery Medicine & Life Sciences
Mycobacterium Medicine & Life Sciences
Genes Chemical Compounds
Pharmaceutical Preparations Medicine & Life Sciences
Anti-Bacterial Agents Medicine & Life Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2012 2019

Changing the Rules of TB-Drug Discovery

Harrison, J. & Cox, J. A. G., 30 Oct 2019, In : Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Fumarate Hydratase
Drug Discovery
Mycobacterium tuberculosis
Tuberculosis
Anti-Bacterial Agents

Crystal structure of Mycobacterium tuberculosis FadB2 implicated in mycobacterial β-oxidation

Cox, J. A. G., Taylor, R. C., Brown, A. K., Attoe, S., Besra, G. S. & Fütterer, K., 1 Jan 2019, In : Acta Crystallographica Section D: Structural Biology. 75, Pt 1, p. 101-108 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
Coenzyme A
Mycobacterium tuberculosis
Tuberculosis
Enoyl-CoA Hydratase
3-Hydroxyacyl-CoA Dehydrogenase

Mycobacterium abscessus: Environmental Bacterium Turned Clinical Nightmare

Lopeman, R. C., Harrison, J., Desai, M. & Cox, J. A. G., 22 Mar 2019, In : Microorganisms. 7, 3, 90.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Open Access
File
Nontuberculous Mycobacteria
Mycobacterium
Bacteria
Leprosy
Lung
Public Opinion
Microbial Drug Resistance
Public Health
Learning
Pharmaceutical Preparations

Antimycobacterial drug discovery using Mycobacteria-infected amoebae identifies anti-infectives and new molecular targets

Trofimov, V., Kicka, S., Mucaria, S., Hanna, N., Ramon-Olayo, F., Del Peral, L. V. G., Lelièvre, J., Ballell, L., Scapozza, L., Besra, G. S., Cox, J. A. G. & Soldati, T., 2 Mar 2018, In : Scientific Reports. 8, 1, 3939.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
Mycobacterium marinum
Amoeba
Drug Discovery
Mycobacterium
Protozoan Infections