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Dr Richard Tennant

Dr Richard Tennant

Senior Research Fellow

 Amory c411


Amory Building, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4RJ , UK


My research focuses on understanding the microbial diversity in natural and industrial environments, specifically towards how these microbes are interacting which each other and their environments.

I uses a variety of techniques to analyse these communities, including both Illumina and Oxford Nanopore DNA sequencing.

My research involves a diverse array of sample types, ranging from palaeoenvironmental lake sediments, agriculturial soils, anaerobic digestion and silage samples to more traditional bacterial cultures.

Broad research specialisms: 

Environmental metagenomics


BSc Forensic Science (Nottingham Trent University) 2007
MSc Biocatalysis (University of Exeter) 2008
PhD Biological Sciences (University of Exeter) 2016

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Journal articles

Wagley S, Morcrette H, Kovacs-Simon A, Yang Z, Power A, Tennant R, Love J, Murray N, Titball R, Butler C, et al (In Press). Bacterial dormancy: a subpopulation of viable but non-culturable cells demonstrates better fitness for revival. PLoS Pathogens
Barnes CM, Power AL, Barber DG, Tennant RK, Jones RT, Lee GR, Hatton J, Elliott A, Zaragoza-Castells J, Haley SM, et al (2023). Deductive automated pollen classification in environmental samples via exploratory deep learning and imaging flow cytometry. New Phytol, 240(3), 1305-1326. Abstract.  Author URL.
Joslin GR, Barber DG, Aston L, Liu P, Kuloyo O, Oentoro K, Liu J, Baugh AV, Fedenko JR, Melas I, et al (2023). Metagenomic analysis of ethylene glycol contamination in anaerobic digestion. Bioresource Technology, 387, 129683-129683.
Power AL, Tennant RK, Stewart AG, Gosden C, Worsley AT, Jones R, Love J (2023). The evolution of atmospheric particulate matter in an urban landscape since the Industrial Revolution. Sci Rep, 13(1). Abstract.  Author URL.
Tennant RK, Power AL, Burton SK, Sinclair N, Parker DA, Jones RT, Lee R, Love J (2022). In-situ sequencing reveals the effect of storage on lacustrine sediment microbiome demographics and functionality. Environmental Microbiome, 17(1). Abstract.
Baugh AV, Howarth TM, West KL, Kerr LEJ, Love J, Parker DA, Fedenko JR, Tennant RK (2021). Draft Genome Sequence of Weissella paramesenteroides STCH-BD1, Isolated from Ensiled Sorghum bicolor. Microbiology Resource Announcements, 10(7). Abstract.
Morcrette H, Kovacs-Simon A, Tennant RK, Love J, Wagley S, Yang ZR, Studholme DJ, Soyer OS, Champion OL, Butler CS, et al (2020). Campylobacter jejuni 11168H Exposed to Penicillin Forms Persister Cells and Cells with Altered Redox Protein Activity. Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology, 10 Abstract.
Tennant RK, Ayine M, Power A, Gilman J, Hewlett M, James P, Singleton C, Parker D, Love J (2019). A Hybrid Sequencing Approach Completes the Genome Sequence of Thermoanaerobacter ethanolicus JW 200. Microbiology Resource Announcements, 8(3).
Tennant RK, Holzer B, Love J, Tchilian E, White HN (2019). Higher levels of B-cell mutation in the early germinal centres of an inefficient secondary antibody response to a variant influenza haemagglutinin. Immunology, 157(1), 86-91. Abstract.  Author URL.
Tennant RK, Lux T, Sambles C, Kuhn N, Petticrew E, Oldfield R, Parker D, Hatton J, Moore K, Lee R, et al (2019). Palaeogenomics of the Hydrocarbon Producing Microalga Botryococcus braunii. Scientific Reports, 9
Gilman J, Singleton C, Tennant RK, James P, Howard TP, Lux T, Parker DA, Love J (2019). Rapid, Heuristic Discovery and Design of Promoter Collections in Non-Model Microbes for Industrial Applications. ACS Synth Biol, 8(5), 1175-1186. Abstract.  Author URL.
Power A, Tennant RK, Jones RT, Tang Y, Du J, Worsley AT, Love J (2018). Monitoring Impacts of Urbanisation and Industrialisation on Air Quality in the Anthropocene Using Urban Pond Sediments. Frontiers in Earth Science, 6
Burton BR, Tennant RK, Love J, Titball RW, Wraith DC, White HN (2018). Variant proteins stimulate more IgM+ GC B-cells revealing a mechanism of cross-reactive recognition by antibody memory. eLife
Tennant RK, Sambles CM, Diffey GE, Moore KA, Love J (2017). Metagenomic Analysis of Silage. Journal of Visualized Experiments, 119, e54936-e54936.
Tennant RK, Jones RT, Brock F, Cook C, Turney CSM, Love J, Lee R (2013). A new flow cytometry method enabling rapid purification of fossil pollen from terrestrial sediments for AMS radiocarbon dating. JOURNAL OF QUATERNARY SCIENCE, 28(3), 229-236.  Author URL.
(2013). Flow sorting for fossil pollen. Nature, 497(7449), 291-291.
Tennant RK, Jones RT, Love J, Lee R (2012). A new flow cytometry method enabling rapid purification of diatoms from silica-rich lacustrine sediments. Journal of Paleolimnology, 49(2), 305-309.


Murray AJ, Love J, Redwood MD, Orozco RL, Tennant RK, Woodhall F, Goodridge F, Macaskie LE (2018). Enhancement of Photosynthetic Productivity by Quantum Dots Application. In Stavrou VN (Ed) Nonmagnetic and Magnetic Quantum Dots, IntechOpen.
Cook C, Dayananda C, Tennant RK, Love J (2017). Third‐Generation Biofuels from the Microalga, Botryococcus braunii. In Love J, Bryant J (Eds.) Biofuels and Bioenergy, Wiley.

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Supervision / Group

Postdoctoral researchers

  • Harry Child
  • Supattra Maneein

Postgraduate researchers

  • Dan Barber
  • Le Min Choo

Research Technicians

  • Gabrielle Joslin
  • Lucy Wierzbicki


  • Lucile Hubert

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