Investigates how plants resist diseases
Panagiotis Sarris is a Molecular Biologist and Senior Lecturer of Plant Immunology and Microbiology in the University of Exeter. He investigates how plants resist disease and how resistance is overcome by pathogens. Using molecular biology, genetics, and biochemistry,
Sarris studies the molecular basis of plant-microbe interactions to address microbial pathogenicity on susceptible hosts, and activation of innate immunity in disease-resistant hosts.
He was born on the 24th of September 1974 and he comes from Ierapetra, Crete.
As far as his education is concerned, he got his diploma degree in1999 in Molecular Biology, in the University of “St. Kliment Ohridski”, Faculty of Sciences, Department of Biology, Sofia, Bulgaria. In 2000 he got his MSc degree in “Clinical Chemistry”, University of “St. Kliment Ohridski”, Faculty of Sciences, Department of Biology & Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Department of Molecular Biology and Department of Human Physiology. In 2004 he alo got another MSc degree in “Plant Molecular Biology and Biotechnology”, in the University of Crete, Department of Biology & Imperial college, University of London. Finally, in 2009 he got his PhD degree in the University of Crete, Department of Biology (Research fields: “Molecular Host-Microbe interactions” & “Molecular Microbiology”).
Regarding his professional experience from June 2009-Oct 2009 he was a Postdoctoral Research Associate (University of Crete, Department of Biology, Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology and Plant Biotechnology). From October 2009 to June 2011 he was a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the University of Crete, School of Medicine. From June 2012 to May 2014 he was a Senior Postdoctoral Research Associate (MC-IEF Fellow): University of East Anglia (The Sainsbury Laboratory), Norwich Research Park, UK. From June 2014 toNov 2015 he was a Senior Research Associate again in the University of East Anglia (The Sainsbury Laboratory), Norwich Research Park, UK. Finally, from December 2015 until today he is an Associate Professor/Senior Lecturer at the Department of Biosciences, in the University of Exeter, UK. (Lab of Plant Molecular Immunology and Microbiology).
As Dr. Sarris has mentioned at a past interview, his choice of leaving Greece in order to study abroad was a result of the economic crisis. “There is a huge reduction in the funding of research and universities. The quality of the research is seriously attacked and young scientists are pushed to leave their country in order to seek a better future abroad. If you add bureaucracy to the problem you have the whole picture of the problem in Greece”.
What is interesting though is that Dr. Panagiotis Sarris decided to return to Greece in collaboration with the Foundation for Research and Technology, in Crete, where he will be the Head of the Department of Plant Immunology and Microbiology, starting from 2017. “A lot of Greeks believe that there is a professional “paradise” abroad for all, just waiting for them. This is only a myth, it’s not true. It is extremely hard and takes a lot of work”, says Dr. Sarris at a past interview.
Dr. Sarris has more than 30 scientific publications in the most prestigious journals and magazines, such as Science, Cell, Nature, and more.