Amy Newman

University of Warwick


Unravelling the significance of plant-microbial circadian interactions in the root zone


Gary Bending, Isabelle Carre

PhD Summary

Recent research at Warwick has shown that there seem to be distinct diurnal rhythms in the root zone. Some plant gene expression, microbes, and microbial functions appear to oscillate over daily cycles. I will be investigating why this might be, using many growth, sampling and molecular biology approaches both in the lab and field.

What inspires you?

As far back as I can remember, I’d always been interested in nature and the world around me. Doing my Biology degree I realised just how many interesting things there are going on in organisms and biological systems in research areas I’d never heard of until university!

Previous Activity

I came straight into my PhD from a 4 year integrated Masters degree in Biology at Bristol University. I’d done a couple of funded placements in the uni holidays too, which I think really helped my application.

Why did you choose Docotoral Research?

As I went through my first degree, I found myself particularly enjoying the research projects, as I liked managing projects and getting really in-depth. I knew I wanted to continue in science, and followed my interest in plant-microbe interactions and practical work to this PhD.

Why did you choose a CENTA Studentship?

The fact I get to go straight into working on my chosen project in my first year, and the training is spread throughout my studentship. Also, the cohort of students on the CENTA scheme is very environment-focused, which is great as I’m interested in how biology systems and functions fit in the context of the whole environment.

What are your future plans

I’m not quite sure what I want to do afterwards yet; at the moment I think I would like to continue in science, perhaps in research. Whatever I decide, I know the broad transferrable skills training I’ll get from the CENTA programme along with the biology-specific skills I’ll gain from my project should make me a good candidate for all sorts of areas.