Nixxie tubes. Why? As Principal Investigator, it's my job to have ideas. That's what I now am - like a queen termite whose entire life is just firing out eggs, the PI fires out ideas, papers and grant applications and nurtures their brood of researchers. Nixxie tubes are rather clever electronic valves with multiple anodes in different shapes that allow them to change display to show various numbers. Their rapid-switching between functions and constant glow reminds me of academics!
Dr Rich Boden FLS FRSB FRMS FZS FHEA
Associate Professor of Microbial Physiology and Taxonomy (University of Plymouth) and Associate Head of School of Biological and Marine Sciences (Biological Sciences Subject Group [Division] Lead), 2012 to present.
Editor-In-Chief, FEMS Microbiology Letters, 2014 to present.
I am a microbial physiologist, taxonomist, biochemist and historian of science, with my main area of interest being chemolithoautotrophic and photolithoautotrophic Bacteria key to the sulfur cycle. The electron donors I am interested in are polythionates, elementary sulfur, thiosulfate, dithionate, carbon disulfide and one-carbon sulfur compounds such as dimethylsulfide. I am also interested in metal redox reactions mediated by the Bacteria, particularly metals of the d and f blocks of the periodic table such as iron, manganese, uranium and plutonium. I have side-interests in bioremediation, biomining and biorefinery and in particular in the production of commodities from wastes. I make extensive use of genomics and evolutionary analyses in my work.
My physiological interests include growth kinetics, bioenergetics, use of the chemostat as a tool in understanding energy metabolism.
My biochemical interests include flavin-linked monooxygenases, di-iron monooxygenases, copper monooxygenases, PQQ-linked dehydrogenases and cytochromes and other respiratory chain proteins.
My taxonomic interests include the general 'sulfur Bacteria', namely those of the Alphaproteobacteria (Starkeya, Paracoccus, Xanthobacter), the Betaproteobacteria (Thiobacillus, Annwoodia, Thiomonas), the Gammaproteobacteria (Halothiobacillus, Guyparkeria, Thiomicrospira, Thiomicrorhabdus, Hydrogenovibrio) and the Acidithiobacillia (Thermithiobacillus and Acidithiobacillus). I am also interested in methylotrophs such as Methylobacterium, Methylomonas, Methylococcus, Methylosinus and Crenothrix.
I have thus far named 2 species (Methylophaga thiooxydans and Methylophaga lonarensis), 5 genera (Annwoodia, Guyparkeria, Thiomicrorhabdus, Thiolinea, Thiofilum), 8 families (Thiobacillaceae, Zoogloeaceae, Azonexaceae, Sterolibacteraceae, Thioalkalibacteraceae, Thiolineaceae, Thiofilaceae, Leucotrichaceae) and a class (Hydrogenophilalia). I have also named too many comb. novae to remember!
My historical interests centre on early women microbiologists, in particular Mrs Grace C Frankland FLS FRMS (nee Toynbee) and the work of her husband Prof Percy Frankland FRS. I am also interested in early female Fellows of the Linnean Society of London and the Royal Society.