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Professor Keith Leppard





Life Sciences
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0)2476523579
WebLink: Keith Leppard - Research in Detail

Research Interests

My research group studies various aspects of adenovirus cell and molecular biology. Our current research aims are:
  • to understand the interactions of adenovirus with its host cell at the molecular level, particularly the innate responses of the cell to infection
  • to gain insight into the relationship between cellular stress responses and infection
  • to understand how adenovirus late gene expression is controlled in productive infections and reactivation from latency in lymphoid cells
  • to use our knowledge of adenoviruses to generated improved adenovirus vectors for gene therapy and recombinant vaccine delivery

More detailed descriptions of our work are available on my Research Page.
or, for a explanation of our work without the detail and jargon, view my Research for a General Audience page.

View a full list of my publications (pdf)


After gaining my first degree in Biochemistry from Oxford, U.K., I began my research career studying for a PhD with Dr Lionel Crawford, working in the labs of what was then the Imperial Cancer Research Fund (now Cancer Research UK) at Lincolns Inn Fields, London. This work focused on the then newly discovered cellular tumour suppressor protein, p53, which was being studied in the context of SV40 infection. From there I moved to a postdoctoral position with Prof Tom Shenk, first at SUNY Stony Brook and then at Princeton. There I learned the adenovirus genetic system that I have worked on ever since. I left Princeton in 1988 to take up a lectureship in the Department of Biological Sciences, University of Warwick, where I am now Professor.

I have a broad interest in adenovirus molecular and cell biology and my work has made several major contributions to this field. A particular focus has been the functions of the proteins encoded by the viral E1B and E4 genes, and most recently the L4 gene, in controlling viral gene expression and the biology of the host cell. My studies of E4 proteins have led me into a exploring the diversity and function of host cell PML proteins. These proteins are crucial in many aspects of cell function, particularly the innate immune response. A further significant strand of recent work has been in the development of adenovirus as a vector for gene delivery.

I have co-authored a successful undergraduate textbook, Introduction to Modern Virology, with Prof. Nigel Dimmock and Prof. Andrew Easton.

Research Projects

View Current Projects        View All Projects


View All Publications

Post Graduate Supervision

  • The Role of PML-II in type I Interferon Response and Gene Transcription Regulation Date of Completion:2014
  • The role of PML proteins in adenovirus type 5 infection and the type I interferon response Date of Completion:2010
  • The development of recombinant adenoviral vaccines to target pneumovirus infection Date of Completion:2010
  • The role of NSP1 in rotavirus pathogenesis Date of Completion:2013
  • Promyelocytic Leukaemia Protein Isoform II and Mild Heat Stress Compromise Human Adenovirus Type 5 Gene Expression Date of Completion:2016

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    Research Themes:

    Biomedical Science

    PML proteins and inflammation project

    Project research page

    Find Keith Leppard on:




    Virology Teaching:

    IntroModernVir 7th edn cover

    Authored at Warwick with Andrew Easton and Nigel Dimmock

    Introduction to Modern Virology 7th edn 2016


    Member and supporter of:

    Microbiology Society

    American Society for Microbiology