My PhD project investigates the microbial ecology of porcine tonsils. I cover both topics of fundamental scientific interest and applied science useful to the global pig production industry. The ultimate goal is to exploit knowledge developed in this project on microbiota in the oropharyngeal
cavity to prevent infectious disease by Streptococcus suis (and potentially other pathogens which inhabit the same niche). The culturomics tasks are shared with another PhD student where my main roles are (i) in silico analysis of high-throughput DNA sequencing data, (ii) genomics of previously uncultured species and (iii) identification and chemical /biological characterisation of selected natural products produced by biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs), and, via gene-repertoire enrichment analysis, virulence genes and antibiotic resistance genes associated with infectious disease by S. suis and cooccurring microbes.