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Dr Adam Bentham

Assistant Professor

Assistant Professor in the Department of Biosciences


Adam Bentham completed a Bachelor of Biotechnology (Hons) at Flinders University, South Australia, in 2013. There, he began research into plant innate immunity, focusing on the function of plant intracellular immune receptors and their recognition of secreted pathogen virulence proteins (effectors). In 2014, Adam undertook a PhD in structural biology in the laboratory of Prof. Boštjan Kobe at the University of Queensland, determining the structural and biophysical basis for plant immune receptor activation.

In 2017, Adam joined the laboratory of Prof. Mark Banfield at the John Innes Centre in Norwich, where he studied the structural basis of plant-microbe interactions as a postdoctoral researcher. During his postdoc, Adam determined the structures of several pathogen effectors in complex with various host targets and embarked on plant immune receptor engineering to expand disease resistance in staple crops. In 2023, Adam joined The Sainsbury Laboratory in Norwich as a senior postdoctoral researcher looking into the functions of effector proteins from the rice blast fungus, Magnaporthe oryzae.

In 2024, Adam was appointed to the Department of Bioscience as part of the newly founded Centre for Programmable Biological Matter. His research now focuses on the use of AI-based protein design to bioengineer novel plant-microbe interactions, facilitating a variety of essential processes, including nitrogen fixation and disease resistance.