Professor Ray Dixon FRS
Department of Molecular Microbiology
John Innes Centre
Ray Dixon is recognized for his world-leading research on the molecular biology of nitrogen fixation and biochemical characterisation of its transcriptional control. Dixon was one of the first scientists to develop methods for genetic analysis of diazotrophs and he successfully transferred the complete cluster of nitrogen fixation (nif) genes from Klebsiella pneumoniae to Escherichia coli thus creating the first engineered diazotroph (Dixon and Postgate, 1972). Research in the Dixon laboratory at the John Innes Centre (JIC) currently focuses upon bacterial signal transduction cascades and their interactions with the transcriptional apparatus, with major emphasis on regulatory networks that control the expression of nif genes in response to oxygen, carbon and fixed nitrogen status. His contribution to the IUNFC will involve comparative genome analysis of diazotrophic endophytes and the engineering of ammonium excretion by endophytes in association with cereals.