Jenna Gilkes

Jenna Gilkes

Research Scientist


Specialist in protein expression and purification techniques

I am a Research Scientist within the Protein Science and Engineering team at Callaghan Innovation. My specialty is in protein purification as well as protein expression from a variety of organisms including: E.coli, yeast, bacillus as well as cell-free expression systems.

My scientific career path has been enriching and diverse. I've served as a Post-doctoral Researcher at the University of Canterbury and later as a Lead Scientist at Futurity Bio-Ventures..

My research has led to significant contributions in my field. Notable amongst them is my work on 'Candidatus' Liberibacter solanacearum and reporting the first purification of proteins from this organism to aid in understanding the pathogenicity of the organism. I've also delved into genetic drift and genome reduction's impact on the plant pathogen's enzymatic makeup. 

Being part of the scientific team at Callaghan Innovation, I'm dedicated to advancing protein science and engineering. 

Areas of expertise
  • Protein expression: E.coli, yeast, bacillus, cell-free
  • Protein purification
  • Bachelor of Science: Microbiology-University of the West Indies (Barbados), 2012
  • Master of Philosophy-Biology-University of the West Indies (Barbados), 2015
  • Doctor of Philosophy-Biochemistry-University of Canterbury (Christchurch, NZ), 2019
Selected publications
  • Gilkes, J.M., Frampton, R.A., Smith, G.R. and Dobson, R.C., 2018. Potential pathogenicity determinants in the genome of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’, the causal agent of zebra chip disease of potato. Australasian Plant Pathology, 47, pp.119-134.
  • Gilkes, J.M., Frampton, R.A., Board, A.J., Hudson, A.O., Price, T., Crittenden, D.L., Muscroft-Taylor, A.C., Sheen, C.R., Smith, G.R. and Dobson, R.C., 2023. Genetic drift and genome reduction in the plant pathogen Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum shapes a new enzyme in lysine biosynthesis. bioRxiv, pp.2023-04.
  • Gilkes, J.M., Sheen, C.R., Frampton, R.A., Smith, G.R. and Dobson, R.C., 2019. The First Purification of Functional Proteins from the Unculturable, Genome-Reduced, Bottlenecked α-Proteobacterium ‘Candidatu s Liberibacter solanacearum’. Phytopathology, 109(7), pp.1141-1148.
  • Alleyne, A.T. and Gilkes, J.M., 2018. Molecular diagnosis of super elongation disease in field and laboratory grown cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) plants. Tropical Agriculture.
Popular Topics