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Prof Jonathan Swann


Professor of Biomolecular Medicine
NIHR BRC Theme Co-lead for Nutrition, Lifestyle & Metabolism

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Jonathan Swann is a Professor of Biomolecular Medicine in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Southampton. He leads a metabolomic-based research programme to understand the influence of gene-environment interactions on the mammalian metabolic system and their implications for development, health, and disease. 

His primary interests involve developing analytical techniques and models to study the metabolic interactions between the diet, the gut microbiome and the mammalian host across the lifecourse. He has a specific interest in the microbiota-gut-brain axis.

Landmark publications:

Diaz Heijtz R, Gressens P, Swann JR. Targeting microbial metabolites to treat autism. Nat Med. 2022; 28(3):448-450. doi: 10.1038/s41591-022-01711-8. PMID: 35165452.

Salminen S, Collado MC, Endo A, Hill C, Lebeer S, Quigley EMM, Sanders ME, Shamir R, Swann JR, Szajewska H, Vinderola G. The International Scientific Association   of Probiotics and Prebiotics (ISAPP) consensus statement on the definition   and scope of postbiotics. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2021; 18(9):649-667.   doi: 10.1038/s41575-021-00440-6. PMID: 33948025.

Caspani G, Turecki G, Lam RW, Milev RV, Frey BN, MacQueen GM, Müller DJ, Rotzinger S, Kennedy SH, Foster JA, Swann JR. Metabolomic signatures associated with depression and predictors of antidepressant response in humans: A CAN-BIND-1 report. Commun Biol. 2021; 4(1):903. doi: 10.1038/s42003-021-02421-6. PMID: 34294869.

Giallourou N, Fardus-Reid F, Panic G, Veselkov K, McCormick BJJ, Olortegui MP, Ahmed T, Mduma E, Yori PP, Mahfuz M, Svensen E, Ahmed MMM, Colston JM, Kosek MN, Swann JR. Metabolic maturation in the first 2 years of life in resource-constrained settings and its association with postnatal growths. Sci Adv. 2020; 6(15):eaay5969. doi: 10.1126/sciadv.aay5969. PMID: 32284996.

Mars RAT, Yang Y, Ward T, Houtti M, Priya S, Lekatz HR, Tang X, Sun Z, Kalari KR, Korem T, Bhattarai Y, Zheng T, Bar N, Frost G, Johnson AJ, van Treuren W, Han S, Ordog T, Grover M, Sonnenburg J, D'Amato M, Camilleri M, Elinav E, Segal E, Blekhman R, Farrugia G, Swann JR, Knights D, Kashyap PC. Longitudinal Multi-omics Reveals Subset-Specific Mechanisms Underlying Irritable Bowel   Syndrome. Cell. 2020; 182(6):1460-1473.e17. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2020.08.007. PMID: 32916129.

Swann JR, Spitzer SO, Diaz Heijtz R. Developmental Signatures of Microbiota-Derived Metabolites in the Mouse Brain. Metabolites. 2020; 10(5):172. doi: 10.3390/metabo10050172. PMID: 32344839.

Major grants

Current grants:

  • BBSRC, “Investigating the influence of gut microbial metabolism on normal age-related cognitive decline”. 2022-2025. Role: PI.

  • Optibiotix Health, “PROSLEEP: Microbiota modulatory foods for improving sleep via the gut clock”. 2021–2024. Role: PI.

  • National Institutes of Health, US, “Interactions of dietary protein intake and intestinal resident microbiota affecting susceptibility to persistent Giardia infection and Giardia-mediated enteropathy”. 2022-2025. Role: CoI.

  • National Institutes of Health, US, “Alanyl-glutamine supplementation of standard treatment for C. difficile infection”. 2022–2024. Role: CoI.

  • MRC, “Do systemic metabolites drive the chondroprotective effects of the IL18-/- gut microbiome in osteoarthritis?. 2021-2024. Role: CoI

  • MRC, “Childhood malnutrition and adult NCD: Generating evidence on mechanistic links to inform future policy/practice”. 2021-2024. Role: CoI

Impact examples:

  • Associate Editor of Microbiome journal (IF 15.557)

  • Associate Editor of Frontiers in Endocrinology – Systems Endocrinology (IF 5.555)

  • Director of the Clinical Metabolomics Unit at the University of Southampton

  • British Society for Gastroenterology - Member of the Gut Microbiota for Health panel. Lead for the Metabolomics theme.

  • Member of the organising and program committee for the International Conference on the microbiota-gut-brain axis: Mind, Mood and Microbes.

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