Dr Neil Crickmore

Senior Lecturer in Molecular Genetics
Department of Biochemistry
School of Life Sciences
University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton

Email: n.crickmore@sussex.ac.uk
Phone: +44 1273 678917 / 678897
Fax: +44 1273 678433


Bt research
Mosquito Control
COST 862
Lab Members

Bacillus thuringiensis

This bacterium forms the major part of my research interests. It is a Gram positive spore-former that synthesizes a large cytoplasmic crystal containing insecticidal toxins. We are interested in the mechanism of in vivo crystallisation, the mechanism of action of the toxin within the insect gut, and the ways in which insects develop resistance to the toxins.

Mosquito Control

In collaboration with the Corporacion para Investigones Biologicas, Colombia and with funding from The Wellcome Trust we have been looking at methods of creating improved biological mosquitocides using recombinant DNA technology.

COST 862 - Bacterial toxins for insect control

Further details of this action, which I chair, can be found here

Bacillus thuringiensis Toxin Gene Nomenclature

If you've stumbled across this page whilst looking for the Bt toxin gene nomenclature site that I maintain, or indeed if you're interested in this project, it is currently residing here

The figure to the left shows the crystal structure of the Cyt2B dimer, kindly provided by Dr Jade Li

Scientific Journals

I am on the editorial board of two international journals

Journal of Invertebrate Pathology

Biocontrol Science and Technology

I am also the previous chair of the bacterial division of the Society for Invertebrate Pathology

Lab Members (2009/10)

Name Status Research Area Funding
Zenas George DPhil Student Mosquito control
Nigerian Government
Vidisha Krishnan DPhil Student Toxin mechanism of action  
Ruchir Misra MPhil Student Insecticide resistance  
Donghai Peng Visiting Fellow Novel insecticides
Alicia Elhigazi MSc Student    
Elnaz Esfahani MSc Student    
JingQiu Hu MSc Student    
Cinthiya Jacob MSc Student    
Lauren Small Project Student    
Shraddha Patel Project Student    
Dan Baldwin Project Student    
Nicola Bishop Project Student    

Past Lab Members

Changlong Shu Visiting Student 2009
Goutham Raval MSc Student 2008-9
Prashanth Saseedharan MSc Student 2008-9
Paul Johnston DPhil Student 2006-9
Stella Stamatopoulou MSc Student 2007-8
Venkatasamy Balasubramani Visiting Fellow 2007-8
Zhang Wenfei Visiting Student 2008
Mark Bruce DPhil Student 2005-8
Ali Sayyed Post-doc 2005-8
Sarfraz Ali Shad Visiting Student 2007-8
Ruchir MSc Student 2006-7
Munir Ahmad Visiting Student 2006-7
Ko-Chun Lou MSc Student 2005-6
Vignesh Venkatraman MSc Student 2005-6
Dasheng Zheng Visiting Fellow 2005-6
Jeremy Coen Post-doc  
Simon Jennings Post-doc  
Roxani Gatsi DPhil Student  
Thaleia Kouskoura DPhil Student  


Recent Publications

Bacillus thuringiensis - an impotent pathogen? (2010)
Ben Raymond, Paul Johnston, Christina Nielsen-LeRoux, Didier Lereclus, Neil Crickmore
Trends in Microbiology in press

Gut bacteria not required for Bacillus thuringiensis insecticidal activity towards the tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta (2009)
Paul Johnston and Neil Crickmore
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 75: 5094-5099

A mid-gut microbiota is not required for the pathogenicity of Bacillus thuringiensis to diamondback moth larvae (2009)
Ben Raymond, Paul Johnston, Denis Wright, Richard Ellis, Neil Crickmore, Michael Bonsall
Environmental Microbiology 11, 2556-2563

Genetic Characterisation of Resistance to Deltamethrin in Plutella xylostella (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae) from India (2008)
Venkatasamy Balasubramani, Ali H. Sayyed and Neil Crickmore
Journal of Economic Entomology 101, 1911-1918

Fitness Costs limit the Development of Resistance to Indoxacarb and Deltamethrin in Heliothis virescens (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) (2008)
Ali H. Sayyed, Munir Ahmad and Neil Crickmore
Journal of Economic Entomology 101, 1927-1933

Genetic, Biochemical, and Physiological Characterization of Spinosad Resistance in Plutella xylostella (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae) (2008)
Ali H. Sayyed, Shafqat Saeed, M Noor-Ul-Ane and Neil Crickmore
Journal of Economic Entomology 101, 1658-1666

Cloning and characterization of a novel Cry1A toxin from Bacillus thuringiensis with high toxicity to the Asian corn borer and other lepidopteran insects (2008)
Xue J, Liang G, Crickmore N, Li H, He K, Song F, Feng X, Huang D, Zhang J.
FEMS Microbiology Letters 280, 95-101

Cross-resistance between a Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxin and non-Bt insecticides in the diamondback moth. (2008)
Ali H. Sayyed, Graham Moores, Neil Crickmore and Denis J. Wright
Pest Management Science 64, 813-819

Mechanisms of resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis in the diamondback moth. (2007)
Mark J. Bruce, Roxani Gatsi, Neil Crickmore and Ali. H. Sayyed
Biopesticides International 3, 1-12

Genetics and Mechanism of Resistance to Deltamethrin in a Field Population of Spodoptera litura (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). (2007)
Munir Ahmad, Ali H. Sayyed, Neil Crickmore and Mushtaq A. Saleem
Pest Management Science 63, 1002-1010

Selection of a field population of Diamondback Moth (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae) with acetamiprid maintains, but does not increase, cross-resistance to pyrethroids.(2007)
Ali H Sayyed and Neil Crickmore
Journal of Economic Entomology 100: 932-938

Expression of mosquitocidal Cyt1Aa toxin from Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis in Asticcacaulis excentricus (2007)
Zheng Da-sheng, Crickmore Neil, Cai Ya-jun, Yan Jian-ping, YuanZhi-ming
Acta Microbiologica Sinica 47, 217-220

Co-expression of the mosquitocidal toxins Cyt1Aa and Cry11Aa from Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis in Asticcacaulis excentricus (2006) Dasheng Zheng, Norma Adriana Valdez-Cruz, Gemma Armengol, Chloe Sevrez, Jose Maurilio Munoz-Olaya, Zhiming Yuan, Sergio Orduz, Neil Crickmore (2006). Current Microbiology 54, 58-62

Beyond the spore - past and future developments of Bacillus thuringiensis as a biopesticide (2006)
Neil Crickmore
Journal of Applied Microbiology 101, 616-619

Common, but complex, mode of resistance of Plutella xylostella toBacillus thuringiensis toxins Cry1Ab and Cry1Ac (2005)
Ali H. Sayyed, Roxani Gatsi, M. Sales Ibiza-Palacios,Baltasar Escriche, Denis J. Wright, and Neil Crickmore
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 71, 6863-6869

Expression of the Bacillus thuringiensis mosquitocidal toxin Cry11Aa in the aquatic bacterium Asticcacaulis excentricus (2005)
Gemma Armengol, Oscar Guevara, Sergio Orduz and Neil Crickmore
Current Microbiology 51, 430-433

Using worms to better understand how Bacillus thuringiensis kills insects (2005).
Neil Crickmore
Trends in Microbiology 13, 347-350

Structure, diversity and evolution of protein toxins from spore-forming entomopathogenic bacteria (2003)
Ruud A. de Maagd, Alejandra Bravo, Colin Berry, Neil Crickmore and H. Ernest Schnepf
Annual Review of Genetics 37, 409-433

Identification of a novel DNA methyltransferase activity from Bacillus thuringiensis (2003)
Elizabeth Jenkinson and Neil Crickmore
Current Microbiology 47, 144-145

N-terminal activation is an essential early step in the mechanism of action of the Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ac
insecticidal toxin. (2002)
Alejandra Bravo, Jorge Sanchez, Thaleia Kouskoura and Neil Crickmore
Journal of Biological Chemistry 277, 23985-23987

The diverse armoury of the Bt crystal (2002)
Neil Crickmore
Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Bacillus thuringiensis pp147-152
ISSN 1516-781X

Cyt1Aa from Bacillus thuringiensis var israelensis is toxic to the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella and synergizes
the activity of Cry1Ac towards a resistant strain. (2001)
Ali Sayyed, Neil Crickmore and Denis Wright
Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 67, 5859-5861

Expression and crystallization of an N-terminally activated form of the Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ca toxin. (2001)
Thaleia Kouskoura, Candy Tickner and Neil Crickmore.
Current Microbiology. 43, 371-373

Susceptibility of a field-derived, Bt-resistant strain of diamondback moth to in vitro activated Cry1Ac toxin. (2001)
Ali Sayyed, Roxani Gatsi, Thaleia Kouskoura, Denis Wright and Neil Crickmore
Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 67, 4372-4373

Cross-resistance and stability of resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis toxin Cry1C in diamondback moth. (2001)
Yong-Biao Liu, Bruce Tabashnik, Susan Meyer and Neil Crickmore.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 67, 3216-3219

How Bacillus thuringiensis has evolved specific toxins to colonize the insect world. (2001)
Ruud de Maagd, Alejandra Bravo and Neil Crickmore.
Trends in Genetics. 17, 193-199

Cellular Localization and characterization of the Bacillus thuringiensis Orf2 crystallisation factor. (2001)
Nicholas Staples, David Ellar and Neil Crickmore.
Current Microbiology. 42, 388-392

The development of recombinant bacteria for insect pest control. (2000)
Neil Crickmore.
Memorias Sociedad Colombiana de Entomologia 27, 73-86

The diversity of Bacillus thuringiensis delta-endotoxins. (2000)
Neil Crickmore.
in "Entomopathogenic bacteria : from laboratory to field application". Klewer Academic Publishers, London Eds J-F Charles, A Delecluse and C Nelson-LeRoux pp 65-79