Dr Nela Nikolic
Telephone: 01392 727467
Extension: (Streatham) 7467
I am a Postdoctoral Research Associate working with Dr Fabrice Gielen at the Living Systems Institute (LSI).
I am broadly interested in understanding what makes microbes such experts to live almost everywhere, and to successfully occupy new habitats. I investigate genomic traits that re-route bacterial core regulatory networks, and as such make bacteria resilient to survive in harsh conditions, fight viral predators, and colonize new hosts.
My scientific career has had an interdisciplinary flavor: training in molecular biology, research projects in computational biology, PhD and postdoctoral projects in single-cell microbiology and phage biology.
I have published 11 peer-reviewed journal articles (five of these as a corresponding author, all open access),
and a single-author open-access review.
1. Roles of accessory genetic elements in bacterial resilience
2. Dynamic interactions between bacterial viruses (phages) and bacterial populations
3. Advancing antibiotic-independent treatments and phage therapy against bacterial diseases
2021 – Postdoc – Living Systems Institute, University of Exeter, UK
2016 – 2021 Postdoc – Institute of Science and Technology Austria, Austria
2013 – 2016 Postdoc – University of Vienna, Max Perutz Labs, Austria
2012 Visiting Scientist – Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Bremen, Germany
2008 – 2013 PhD Candidate – Department of Environmental Systems Science, ETH Zurich, and Department of Environmental Microbiology, Eawag, Duebendorf, Switzerland
2008 Visiting Scientist – Department of Computer Science, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
2007 – 2008 Research Assistant – Mediterranean Institute for Life Sciences (MedILS), Split, Croatia
2006 Intern (IAESTE student exchange program) – Veterinary Research Institute, Brno, Czech Republic
2005 – 2006 MSc Candidate – Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb, Croatia
Independent Postdoctoral Fellowships and Personal Research Grants
2022 – 2023 Pump-Priming Initiative Award from the Wellcome ISSF-funded Translational Research Exchange at Exeter (TREE) center; UK
2022 Research Restart Award from the Wellcome ISSF-funded TREE center; UK
2019 – 2021 FWF (Austrian Science Fund) Elise Richter Program: Austrian career development for senior postdocs; Austria
2016 – 2019 ISTFELLOW, International IST Postdoctoral Fellowship Program – The European Union’s Marie Curie COFUND; Austria
2014 – 2016 FWF Lise Meitner Program: Austrian career development for postdoctoral researchers from abroad; Austria
2013 – 2014 SNF (Swiss National Science Foundation) Fellowship for prospective researchers; Austria
2013 FFG (Austrian Research Promotion Agency) Career Grants: Relocation Grant; Austria
2012 FEMS (Federation of European Microbiological Societies) Research Grant; Germany
2008 Science and Technology Project of the World Bank and Croatian Ministry of Science – Unity through Knowledge Fund: "Gaining experience" Grant; Switzerland
Altogether, I received six personal postdoctoral funding awards as a project leader (590k EUR), 11 research / travel / training grants, and two scholarships.
Recent Academic Awards and Prizes
2021 Nominated for Membership in the Young Academy of the Austrian Academy of Sciences
2018 National Microbiology Prize from the Austrian Society for Hygiene, Microbiology and Preventive Medicine
- Representative of the LSI Early Career Research Network
- Member of the LSI Equality, Diversity & Inclusivity working group