Blood diagnostics

DNA blood cell on scientific background. 3d illustration.

Our research is driven by the desire to translate our findings into clinical practice. 

We have developed blood group genotyping approaches that investigate the complete genes of the major blood group systems. In this we have identified multiple blood group alleles, critical for the development of software tools to genotype patients and donors using current next generation sequencing platforms. 

We are also investigating novel approaches to non-invasive diagnosis of Down syndrome, and to understand the pathology of this condition. 

Other projects include the development of recombinant Rh antigens and understanding the mechanisms of red cell turnover, especially involving red cell CD47.

The group utilises the genomic and proteomic analysis facilities and expertise of the Plymouth University Systems Biology Centre

Blood diagnostics group

Professor Neil Avent (Group Lead)
Dr Tracey Madgett (Senior Research Fellow)
Dr Dyan Ankrett (Postdoctoral Research Fellow)
Dr Paul Waines (Senior Research Technician)
Ibrahim Halawani (PhD student)
Mashael Alkhanbashi (PhD student)
Wajnat Tounsi (PhD student)
Raed Garout (PhD student)

Past PhD students

Dr Amr Halawani (Jazan University, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia)
Dr Bing Li (Imperial)
Tara Miran (MRes)
Dr Kelly Sillence 
Dr Malik Altayar 

Past staff

Dr Llinos Roberts – The Fetal Medicine Centre, London
Dr Kelly Sillence 
Dr Kayleigh Bassiri


University of Plymouth collaborators

Professor Simon Jackson, School of Biomedical and Healthcare Sciences
Professor Genhua Pan, School of Computing, Electronics and Mathematics
Dr Michael Jarvis, School of Biomedical and Healthcare Sciences
Dr Kris Jeremy, School of Biomedical and Healthcare Sciences
Dr Andrew Foey, School of Biomedical and Healthcare Sciences

External collaborators

Professor Ellen van der Schoot, Sanquin, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Professor Martin Olsson, University of Lund, Sweden
Dr Jill Storry, University of Lund, Sweden
Dr Greg Denomme, Wisconsin Blood Centre, USA
Dr Cathy Hyland, Australian Red Cross, Brisbane, Australia
Dr Martin Pisacka, Institute of Haematology and Blood Transfusion, Prague, Czech Republic
Dr Nuria Nogues, Barcelona Blood Centre
Professor Mike Merrick (emeritus) John Innes Institute, Norwich
Professor Peter Soothill (emeritus) University of Bristol
Dr Marion Reid (retired) New York Blood Center, USA
Dr Ross Welch, Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust
Professor Lyn Chitty, Institute of Child Health, UCL

Blood diagnostics group