Dr Lesley Sakyi

Infection Biology & Microbiomes


    Personal Statement

    Lesley Bell-Sakyi manages the Tick Cell Biobank, the world’s largest collection of continuous cell lines derived from ticks and other arthropods. Her particular expertise lies in the establishment of continuous cell lines (37 to date) from embryonic, larval and nymphal tissues of a range of ixodid and argasid tick species, and the propagation and study of viral, bacterial and protozoan pathogens in tick cell and organ culture systems. Lesley’s career spans nearly 40 years of research on ticks and tick-borne diseases of livestock and humans at the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Tropical Veterinary Medicine (1977-2008 including three years’ field work on secondment to the Ghana Government Veterinary Services Department) and Roslin Institute (2008-2012), and The Pirbright Institute (2012-2017). She has worked with arboviruses, obligate intracellular bacteria of the genera Anaplasma, Ehrlichia, Rickettsia and Spiroplasma, and protozoa of the genera Babesia and Theileria. She holds degrees of BSc in Biology (Aberdeen, 1976), MPhil (Edinburgh, 1983) and PhD (Utrecht, 2004). Lesley has co-authored nearly 90 research papers and, through the Tick Cell Biobank, maintains collaborative links with over 40 research institutes in UK, Europe and worldwide.