Dr Edward Sumner graduated from Lancaster University in 2000 with a B.Sc (Hons) in Biology. He then undertook a PhD at the University of Nottingham, in which he investigated the responses of individual yeast cells to stressors such as heat, drugs and other toxins. During his PhD he developed a range of techniques for studying cellular stress responses at the single-cell level, and identified several (non-genetic) factors that can influence the ability of cells to withstand stress-treatment. His findings partly explain the phenomenon whereby genetically identical cells can display widely differing phenotypes (for example, genetically identical cells in the same environment may display thousand-fold differences in their levels of stress resistance).
After completing his PhD, Edward undertook a post-doctoral position at the University of Nottingham. In this post he studied the molecular biology of industrially important fungi, with the aim of increasing the efficiency of industrial fermentation processes.
Since joining Micropathology Ltd in 2004 he has developed a wide range of diagnostic assays. One of his main areas of interest is in respiratory viruses - for which he has developed a suite of assays. He is currently responsible for the overseeing the company’s respiratory virus testing service and is involved in a number of research projects investigating respiratory virus infection in children.
Besides his role as a scientist at the company, Ed is also the company’s Training Officer, with responsibility for ensuring that members of staff are able to take part in continuing professional development and are trained appropriately.