Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

Department of Plant Protection Biology

Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

Laura Grenville-Briggs

Resistance biology
H building

+46 40 41 52 47

Postal address
Dept. of Plant Protection Biology 
Box 102
SE-230 53 Alnarp

Visiting address                         Delivery address
Sundsvägen 14                           Växtskyddsvägen 1



BSc Applied Biology, University of Bath, UK. 1999.
PhD in Molecular Plant Pathology, University of Birmingham, UK. 2003.
Post-Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Teaching and Learning (PGCHE), University of Aberdeen, UK. 2011.
Docent (Associate Professor) in Microbial Glycoscience, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm, Sweden, 2012.

Academic experience

Marie-Curie Intra-European Research Fellow: Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm, Sweden. 2011-2013.
EU funded fellowship. Cell wall biology in oomycete pathogenicity.
(Top-ranking, highest scoring IEF awarded in life sciences 2010).

Post-Doctoral Research positions: University of Aberdeen, UK. 2003-2011.
5 years full time post-doctoral research experience plus 3 years parental leave.

Grade 7 Research fellow: 2008-2011.
Molecular and ecological investigations into the infection process of marine oomycetes on brown algae. (Co-investigator; funded by Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC), UK).

Grade 6 Research fellow: 2003-2008.
Proteomic genetic analysis of development/disease in the potato late blight pathogen Phytophthora infestans. (Funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, (BBSRC) UK).


Late blight of potato and tomato, caused by the oomycete Phytophthora infestans, is a global threat to food security and hugely economically costly to the Swedish potato industry. Approximately half of all fungicides used in Swedish agriculture are directed at controlling potato late blight. New control measures are timely and necessary. My research aims to develop new and sustainable ways to control oomycete diseases, based on a platform of fundamental research.

Work in my group, which is part of the Resistance Biology Unit, is funded by the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research (SSF) and is currently focused around two projects:

  1. Investigating oomycete cell wall biology in P. infestans development and pathogenicity to discover new targets for disease control.
  2. Exploiting the biological activity, and effector repertoire, of the mycoparasitic oomycete Pythium oligandrum for disease control.

Selected publications

Grenville-Briggs LJ, Horner N, Phillips AJ, Beakes GW and van West P. 2013. A family of small tyrosine rich proteins is essential for oogonial and oospore cell wall development of the mycoaparasitic oomycete Pythium oligandrum. Fungal Biology, 117 163-172

Horner N, Grenville-Briggs LJ and van West P. 2012. The oomycete Pythium oligandrum expresses putative effectors during mycoparasitism of Phytophthora infestans and is amenable to transformation. Fungal Biology, 116 24-41

Grenville-Briggs LJ, Gachon CMM, Strittmatter M, Kuepper FC and van West P. 2011. On the origins of biotrophic host-pathogen interactions: A cDNA-based investigation of the marine seaweed Ectocarpus siliculosus infected by the oomycete Eurychasma dicksonii. PloS One, 6 e24500

Grenville-Briggs LJ, Avrova AO, Hay RJ, Bruce CR, Whisson SC and van West P. 2010. Identification of appressorial and mycelial cell wall proteins and a survey of the membrane proteome of Phytophthora infestans. Fungal Biology, 114 702-723

Grenville-Briggs LJ, Anderson VL, Fugelstad J, Avrova A, Bouzenzana J, Williams A, Wawra S, Whisson SC, Birch PRJ, Bulone V and van West P. 2008. Cellulose synthesis in Phytophthora infestans is required for appressoria formation and successful infection of potato. The Plant Cell, 20 720-738

Page updated: 2014-02-20. Page editor:

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