Head of Plant Sciences; Designing Future Wheat (ISP) Leader

Plant Sciences


Malcolm is Head of Plant Sciences and leads the Institute Strategic Programme, Designing Future Wheat. He has published widely on the biochemistry and molecular biology of plant nutrition and is internationally recognised for contributions in the field of plant nutrition, particularly with regard to nitrogen and sulphur. He also leads the field phenotyping project at Rothamsted Research.


+44 (0) 1582 938 597


    Rothamsted Research, Harpenden, AL5 2JQ




      • 2004
        Kataoka, T.,Watanabe-Takahashi, A.,Hayashi, N.,Ohnishi, M.,Mimura, T.,Buchner, P. H.,Hawkesford, M. J.,Yamaya, T.,Takahashi, H.

        Vacuolar sulfate transporters are essential determinants controlling internal distribution of sulfate in Arabidopsis

        The Plant Cell 16 : pp.2693-2704

      • 2004
        Hopkins, L.,Parmar, S.,Bouranis, D.,Howarth, J. R.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Coordinated expression of sulfate uptake and components of the sulfate assimilatory pathway in maize

        Plant Biology 6 : pp.408-414

      • 2004
        Buchner, P. H.,Prosser, I. M.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Phylogeny and expression of paralogous and orthologous sulphate transporter genes in diploid and hexaploid wheats

        Genome 47 : pp.526-534

      • 2004
        Buchner, P. H.,Takahashi, H.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Plant sulphate transporters: co-ordination of uptake, intracellular and long-distance transport

        Journal of Experimental Botany 55 : pp.1765-1773

      • 2003
        Bouranis, D. L.,Chorianopoulou, S. N.,Siyannis, V. F.,Protonotarios, V. E.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Aerenchyma formulation in roots of maize during sulphate starvation

        Planta 217 : pp.382-391

      • 2003
        Bouranis, D. L.,Chorianopoulou, S. N.,Protonotarios, V. E.,Siyannis, V. F.,Hopkins, L.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Leaf responses of young iron-inefficient maize plants to sulfur deprivation

        Journal of Plant Nutrition 26 : pp.1189-1202

      • 2003
        Hawkesford, M. J.

        Transporter gene families in plants: the sulphate transporter gene family - redundancy or specialization

        Physiologia Plantarum 117 : pp.155-163

      • 2003
        Howarth, J. R.,Fourcroy, P.,Davidian, J-C.,Smith, F. W.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Cloning of two contrasting high-affinity sulfate transporters from tomato induced by low sulfate and infection by the vascular pathogen Verticillium dahliae

        Planta 218 : pp.58-64

      • 2002
        Blaszczyk, A.,Sirko, L.,Hawkesford, M. J.,Sirko, A.

        Biochemical analysis of transgenic tobacco lines producing bacterial serine acetyltransferase

        Plant Science 162 : pp.589-597

      • 2002
        Williams, J. S.,Hall, S. A.,Hawkesford, M. J.,Beale, M. H.,Cooper, R. M.

        Elemental sulfur and thiol accumulation in tomato and defense against a fungal vascular pathogen

        Plant Physiology 128 : pp.150-159

      • 2002
        Warrilow, A. G. S.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Modulation of cyanoalanine sythase and O -acetylserine (thiol) lyases A and B activity by beta-substituted alanyl and anion inhibitors

        Journal of Experimental Botany 53 : pp.439-445

      • 2002
        Lombi, E.,Tearall, K. L.,Howarth, J. R.,Zhao, F-J.,Hawkesford, M. J.,McGrath, S. P.

        Influence of iron status on cadmium and zinc uptake by different ecotypes of the hyperaccumulator Thlaspi caerulescens

        Plant Physiology 128(4) : pp.1359-1367
        doi: 10.1104/pp.010731

      • 2001
        Blake-Kalff, M. M. A.,Zhao, F-J.,Hawkesford, M. J.,McGrath, S. P.

        Using plant analysis to predict yield losses caused by sulphur deficiency

        Annals of Applied Biology 138(1) : pp.123-127
        doi: 10.1111/j.1744-7348.2001.tb00093.x

      • 2000
        Blake-Kalff, M. M. A.,Hawkesford, M. J.,Zhao, F-J.,McGrath, S. P.

        Diagnosing sulphur deficiency in field-grown oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) and wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)

        Plant and Soil 225(1) : pp.95-107
        doi: 10.1023/A:1026503812267

      • 2000
        Warrilow, A. G. S.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Cysteine synthase (O -acetylserine (thiol) lyase) substrate specificities classify the mitochondrial isoform as a cyanalanine synthase

        Journal of Experimental Botany 51 : pp.985-993

      • 2000
        Jost, R.,Berkowitz, O.,Wirtz, M.,Hopkins, L.,Hawkesford, M. J.,Hell, R.

        Genomic and functional characterisation of the oas gene family encoding O -acetylserine (thiol) lyases, enzymes catalyzing the final step in cysteine biosynthesis in Arabidopsis thaliana

        Gene 253 : pp.237-247

      • 2000
        Hawkesford, M. J.,Wray, J. L.

        Molecular genetics of sulphate assimilation

        Advances in Botanical Research 33 : pp.159-223

      • 2000
        Smith, F. W.,Rae, A. L.,Hawkesford, M. J.

        Molecular mechanisms of phosphate and sulphate transport in plants

        Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - Biomembranes 1465 : pp.236-245
        doi: 10.1016/S0005-2736(00)00141-3

      • 2000
        Takahashi, H.,Watanabe-Takahashi, A.,Smith, F. W.,Blake-Kalff, M. M. A.,Hawkesford, M. J.,Saito, K.

        The roles of three functional sulphate transporters involved in uptake and translocation of sulphate in Arabidopsis thaliana

        Plant Journal 23 : pp.171-182

      • 2000
        Hawkesford, M. J.

        Plant responses to sulphur deficiency and the genetic manipulation of sulphate transporters to improve S-utilization efficiency

        Journal of Experimental Botany 51 : pp.131-138


      Strategic programme

      • Designing Future Wheat (DFW)

      Science project

      • Wheat Improvement Strategic Programme (WISP) Prebreeding extension
      • Wheat Genetic Improvement Network (WGIN)
      • IWYP Realising increased photosynthetic efficiency to increase wheat yields
      • CP 3.1 – Phenotyping and genotyping photosynthetic traits of the Hereford x Player mapping population
      • NUCLEUS: a virtual joint centre to deliver enhanced Nitrogen Use effiCiency via an integrated soiL-plant systEms approach for the Uk & BraSil (NEWTON FUND)
      • Indo-UK Centre for the improvement of Nitrogen use Efficiency in Wheat (NEWTON FUND)

      PhD project

      • The relationships between genotype, yield and environmental factors on protein distribution in the wheat endosperm


      • 1979 - BSc (Hons) University of Liverpool, UK
      • 1982 - PhD in Science, Dundee University, UK


      • International committee member for Plant Sulfur workshop series
      • Chair of Wheat initiative EWG-NUE
      • Editorial board Plant Biology Journal and BMC Plant Biology
      • Advisory board Journal Experimental Botany, member of DFG (Germany) grants panel on nutrient ecophysiology