Dr Jan Claesen
The Claesen group aims to functionally characterise molecular mechanisms that control bacterial community structure and dynamics in the human microbiome. Bacteria use small molecule chemicals to mediate intra- and interspecies interactions.
All genetic information required for the production of these molecules is typically encoded in one physical location of the bacterial chromosome, in biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs). We identified several widespread families of BGCs that are predicted to contribute to colonisation and inter-species competition.
Our hypothesis is that commensal bacteria from the microbiome use the products of these BGCs in interactions that modulate community composition.
The areas of expertise in the Claesen group include microbiology, genetics and SynBio, small molecule biosynthesis and biochemistry. We are a multidisciplinary, international team of skilled researchers and would love to hear from prospective students and postdocs, as well as collaborators interested in our science.
Jan Claesen has joined IFR to lead a research group aiming to characterise functionally molecular mechanisms that control bacterial community structure and dynamics in the human microbiome.more +
Smanski MJ, H Zhou, J Claesen, B Shen, MA Fischbach, and CA Voigt (2016). Synthetic biology to access and expand nature's chemical diversity. Nat Rev Microbiol, 14(3): 135-149.
Thanapipatsiri A, J Claesen, JP Gomez-Escribano, M Bibb, and A Thamchaipenet (2015). A Streptomyces coelicolor host for the heterologous expression of Type III polyketide synthase genes. Microb Cell Fact, 14(1): 145.
Medema MH, R Kottmann, P Yilmaz, et al. (2015). Minimum information about a biosynthetic gene cluster. Nat Chem Biol, 11(9): 625-631.
Claesen J, and MA Fischbach (2015). Synthetic microbes as drug delivery systems. ACS Synth Biol, 4(4): 358-364. (review)
Wollenberg MS*, J Claesen*, IF Escapa, KL Aldridge, MA Fischbach, and KP Lemon (2014). Propionibacterium-produced coproporphyrin III induces Staphylococcus aureus aggregation and biofilm formation. mBio, 5(4): e01286-01214. (*equal contribution)
Cimermancic P*, MH Medema*, J Claesen*, K Kurita, LC Wieland Brown, K Mavrommatis, A Pati, PA Godfrey, M Koehrsen, J Clardy, BW Birren, E Takano, A Sali, RG Linington, and MA Fischbach (2014). Insights into secondary metabolism from a global analysis of prokaryotic biosynthetic gene clusters. Cell, 158(2): 412-421. (*equal contribution)
Claesen J, and MJ Bibb (2011). Biosynthesis and regulation of grisemycin, a new memberof the linaridin family of ribosomally synthesized peptides produced by Streptomyces griseus IFO 13350. J Bacteriol, 193(10): 2510-2516.
Claesen J, and M Bibb (2010). Genome mining and genetic analysis of cypemycin biosynthesis reveal an unusual class of posttranslationally modified peptides. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 107(37): 16297-16302.
Goto Y, B Li, J Claesen, Y Shi, MJ Bibb, and WA van der Donk (2010). Discovery of unique lanthionine synthetases reveals new mechanistic and evolutionary insights. PLoS Biol, 8(3): e1000339.
Principal Investigator, Institute of Food Research, United Kingdom
Postdoctoral Scholar, University of California at San Francisco, USA
Ph.D. in Biological Sciences; Molecular Microbiology, John Innes Centre and University of East Anglia, United Kingdom
M.S. in Biological Engineering in Cell and Gene Biotechnology, KU Leuven, Belgium
B.S. in Biological Engineering, KU Leuven, Belgium