Personal profile


Chris is Professor of Microbiomics at Northumbria University and an Honorary Consultant Microbiologist within the Northern Care Alliance NHS Foundation Trust.

Since completing his DPhil at the University of Oxford, Chris has built a successful career in environmental microbiology and environmental biotechnology. Wherein he has worked in partnership with a range of SMEs and multinationals (incl. BP, Shell, and Ford Motor Company). He was also cofounder of the NERC spin-out company, Microbial Solutions Ltd, that used proprietary microbial consortia, which he invented, to biologically treat industrial wastewater.

Wanting new challenges, and through a combination of curiosity and serendipity, he realised the urge to refresh and redirect his research towards microbiome research and the roles of human microbiota in health and disease. Chris’ research is now predominantly focused on the role of lung and gut microbiota in chronic diseases, including cystic fibrosis, non-CF bronchiectasis, COPD, and asthma. He puts an emphasis on performing translational research to improve clinical outcomes of patients.

In order to unravel the complexity of human microbiota, he exploits and adapts models, theories, and principles from traditional ecology, coupled with big data from ever improving developments in -omics technologies, applied to cross-sectional and longitudinal patient population studies.

During the pandemic he was appointed as a government scientific adviser for the Joint Biosecurity Centre led Environmental Monitoring for Health Programme. The programme provided early warning of COVID-19 outbreaks through wastewater-based epidemiology and sharing data with NHS Test and Trace and local public health stakeholders. It was also used to direct surge testing and surge vaccinations to combat variants of concern. Within that national programme, Chris had specific responsibility for both Greater Manchester and the Tees Valley Combined Authority area.

For further information click on the links below:

ORCID  │  Scholar  │  LinkedIn  │  Twitter


External positions

Professor, Northern Care Alliance NHS Foundation Trust

2020 → …


Dive into the research topics where Chris van der Gast is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or