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Microbiology Logo Microbiology & Immunology
Te Tari Moromoroiti me te Ārai Mate

Sesquicentennial Distinguished Professor Greg Cook

Research interests:

Microbial physiology and biochemistry, antimicrobial resistance, drug discovery, molecular microbiology, structural biology

Current research:

Research projects in the Cook laboratory are multidisciplinary, spanning human biomedical and agritech/biotech, and covers basic to translational research. We interact with multiple end users in academia, government, industry and pharma.  Research from the Cook laboratory is aimed at providing fundamental knowledge on the metabolism and energetics of bacterial pathogens like Mycobacterium tuberculosis and multidrug-resistant Gram-negative pathogens. A major goal of this research is to translate these findings into new drug target development to combat antimicrobial-resistance (AMR) and tolerance, and provide molecular and mechanistic insight into the mode of action of antimicrobials (old and new).  A second major theme of the Cook laboratory is aimed at preserving human, animal and plant health in the face of AMR through the discovery and implementation of compounds that are used exclusively in animals and plants to combat environmental pathogens like mastitis-causing bacteria and fungal pathogens of plants. The goal of this work is to break the link between human and agricultural use of the same classes of antimicrobials and safeguard against the potential for antimicrobial resistance determinant transfer via the food chain.   Part of this theme includes discovering new inhibitors for management of greenhouse gas emissions in ruminant animals and soils.

 Appointments and Honours:

  • Sesquicentennial Distinguished Chair, University of Otago (2020-present)
  • Director, The Maurice Wilkins Centre for Molecular Biodiscovery, University of Auckland (2020- present) 
  • Head of Department, Microbiology and Immunology, University of Otago (2019-2024)
  • Chair-elect, Gordon Research Conference on Bioenergetics (vice Chair 2019, Chair 2021-24)
  • Academic advisory board member, International joint laboratory of traditional Chinese medicine modernization and innovative drug research, Ministry of Education of China (2018-present)
  • University of Otago Research Group Award, Otago Bacterial Energetics and Antimicrobial Resistance Group (2017)
  • University of Otago Distinguished Research Medal, University of Otago's highest distinction (2014)
  • Fellow of the Royal Society New Zealand Te Apārangi (2013)
  • James Cook Fellow, (2012-2014)
  • Distinguished Orator Award, New Zealand Microbiological Society (2012)
  • Personal Chair, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Otago (2009)
  • 8th Sir William Dunn and Sidney Sussex College Fellow, Cambridge U.K. (2009)
  • Visiting Professor (invited), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Institut für Mikrobiologie, Zurich, Switzerland (2001 and 2005)
  • University of Otago Early Career Award for Distinction in Research (2004)


Research projects 

  • A. Bacterial energetics as a new target space for drug development

  • B. Fueling persistence: adaptation of Mycobacterium tuberculosis to hypoxia and low energy conditions

  • C. Antimicrobial resistance and finding new drugs for environmental microorganisms

These projects utilize modern technologies (e.g. proteomics, transcriptomics, molecular biology and structural biology) to address important questions in bacterial adaptation to environment.


Greg Lab photo 2023

Cook Lab Jan 2023

Current group members

Cook19 colour

Sesquicentennial Distinguished Professor Gregory M. Cook | MSc(Hons), DPhil, FRSNZ
Microbiology and Immunology
University of Otago
Tel/+64 03 479 7722 | Mobile/+64 21 244 7257

Otago Bacterial Energetics and Antimicrobial Resistance Group

JamesCheung4  Rachel Darnell3 ScottFerguson3

James Cheung

Assistant Research Fellow

Dr Rachel Darnell

Research Fellow

Dr Scott Ferguson

Senior Research Fellow

Dr Will Jowsey

Postdoctoral Fellow

MatthewMcneil2  CaraAdolph3  ScottLawrence3 Nicola Marechal2

Dr Matthew McNeil

Senior Research Fellow

Sir Charles Hercus Fellow

Dr Cara Adolph

Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr Scott Lawrence

Postdoctoral Fellow 

Nicola Marechal

Lab Manager 

FrancescaToddRose3  SonyaMros3




 Dr Francesca Todd Rose

Postdoctoral Fellow 

 Sonya Mros

Senior Research Technician 

Matson Kyte

Assistant Research Fellow 

 Dr Cecilia Wang

Postdoctoral Fellow


Postgraduate students

Kerri Reilly Cassie Natalie Waller2 Emma Voss

Kerri Reilly

PhD student

Cassie Chapman

PhD Student

Natalie Waller

PhD Student

Emma Voss

PhD Student

Matigan Smith Ella McBeth Olivia Paxie  

Matigan Smith

MSc Student

Ella Macbeth

PhD Student

Olivia Paxie

PhD Student

Emma Jackson

MSc student 


Zoe Marx

BBiomedSc (Hons)

Caitlin Cleary


Hannah Klaus

Assistant Research Fellow


  Michael Chrisp BSc(Hons)



Recent publications 

View Google Scholar profile


278.  Adolph C, Cheung C-Y, McNeil MB, Jowsey WJ, Williams ZC, Hards K, Harold LK, Aboelela A, Burajoski RS, Buckely BJ, Tyndall JDA, Li Z, Langer JD, Preiss L, Meier T, Steyn A.C, Rhee KY, Berney M, Kelso MJ and Cook, G.M.* A dual-targeting succinate dehydrogenase and F1Fo-ATP synthase inhibitor rapidly sterilizes replicating and non-replicating Mycobacterium tuberculosis.  Cell Chemical Biology (2023),

277.  Todd Rose, FO, Darnell RL, Morris SM, Rose OE, Paxie O, Campbell G, Cook GM and S Gebhard. The two-component system CroRS acts as a master regulator of cell envelope homeostasis to confer antimicrobial tolerance in the bacterial pathogen Enterococcus faecalis.  Molecular Microbiology Jul 20. doi: 10.1111/mmi.15128. online ahead of print (2023)

276.  Kalia NP, Singh S, Hards K, Cheung C-Y, Sviriaeva E,Banaei‐Esfahani A, Aebersold R, Berney M, *Cook GM and K Pethe*. Mycobacterium tuberculosis relies on trace oxygen to maintain energy homeostasis and survive in hypoxic environments. Cell Reports 42, 112444 (2023)

275.  Waller NJE, Cheung C-Y,Cook GM and MB McNeil*. The evolution of antibiotic resistance is associated with collateral drug phenotypes in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Nature Communications Mar 18;14(1):1517 doi: 10.1038/s41467-023-37184-7 (2023).  Editors’ Highlight in “Microbiology and infectious diseases” (

274. Grinter G, Kropp A, Venugopal H, Senger M, Badley J, Cabotaje P, Stripp ST, Barlow CK, Belousoff M, Cook GM, Vincent KA, Schittenhelm RB, Khalid S, Berggren G and C Greening*.  Energy extraction from air: structural basis of atmospheric hydrogen oxidation.  Nature Mar 8. doi: 10.1038/s41586-023-05781-7. Online ahead of print (2023)


273. Harris PWR, Siow A, Yang SH, Wadsworth AD, Tan L, Hermant Y, Mao Y, An C, Hanna CC, Cameron AJ, Allison JR, Chakraborty A, Ferguson SA, Mros S, Hards K, Cook GM, Williamson DA, Carter GP, Chan STS, Painter GA, Sander V, Davidson AJ and MA Brimble.  Synthesis, antibacterial activity, and nephrotoxicity of polymyxin B analogues modified at Leu-7, d-Phe-6, and the N-Terminus enabled by S-lipidation. ACS Infectious Diseases 8:2413−2429 (2022)

272.  Fridianto KT, Li M, Hards K, Negatu DA, Cook GM, Dick T,Lam Y and M-L. Go.  Alkyltriphenylphosphonium turns naphthoquinoneimidazoles into potent membrane depolarizers against mycobacteria.  RSC Medicinal Chemistry (Royal Society of Chemistry) 13:1605–1613 (2022)

271. McNeil, M.B., Cheung, C.-Y., Waller, N., Adolph, C., Chapman, C., Jowsey, W. and G.M. Cook. Uncovering interactions between mycobacterial respiratory complexes to target drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Biology 12:980844.

270. Darnell RL, Paxie O, Todd Rose FO, Morris S, Krause AL, Monk IR, Smith MJB, Stinear TP, Cook GM and S Gebhard.  Antimicrobial tolerance and its role in the development of resistance: lessons from enterococci.  Advances in Microbial Physiology 81:25-65 (2022)

269. Zhou Y, Shao M, Wang W, Cheung CY, Wu Y, Yu H, Hu X, Cook GM, Gong H and X Lu. Discovery of 1-hydroxy-2-methylquinolin-4(1H)-one derivatives as new cytochrome bd oxidase inhibitors for tuberculosis therapy. European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 245:114896 (2023)

268. Lawer A, Tyler C, Hards K, Keighley LM, Cheung CY, Kierek F, Su SM, Matikonda SS, McInnes T, Tyndall JDA, Krause KL, Cook GM and AM Gamble. Synthesis and biological evaluation of aurachin D analogues as inhibitors of Mycobacterium tuberculosis cytochrome bd oxidase. ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters 13:1663-1669 (2022)

267. Hameed HMA, Fang C, Liu Z, Ju Y, Han X, Gao Y, Wang S, Chiwala G, Tan Y, Guan P, Hu J, Xiong X, Peng J, Lin Y, Hussain M, Zhong N, Maslov DA, Cook GM, Liu J and T Zhang. Characterization of genetic variants associated with rifampicin resistance level in Mycobacterium tuberculosis clinical isolates collected in Guangzhou chest hospital, China. Infection and Drug Resistance 15:5655-5666 (2022).

266. Al-Zubaidi A, Cheung CY, Cook GM, Taiaroa G, Mizrahi V, Lott JS and SS Dawes.  RNase HI depletion strongly potentiates cell killing by rifampicin in mycobacteria. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy doi:10.1128/aac.02091-21:e0209121.

265. Mulholland C, Gimenez G, Williamson A, Steele M, Thorpe D, Karalus N, Cursons R, Playle V, Roberts S, Cook GM, Arcus V and HL Aung. Complete genome sequence of a New Zealand Mycobacterium tuberculosis strain responsible for ongoing transmission over the last 30 years. Microbiology Resource Announcements doi:10.1128/mra.00781-22:e0078122 IN PRESS.

264. Wang S, Cai XY, Yu W, Zeng S, Zhang JR, Guo LM, Gao YM, Lu ZL, Hameed HMA, Fang CT, Tian XR, Yusuf B, Chhotaray C, Alam MDS, Zhang BC, Ge HH, Maslov DA, Cook GM, Peng JC, Lin YP, Zhong NS, Zhang GL and TY Zhang.  Arabinosyltransferase C mediates multiple drugs intrinsic resistance by altering cell envelope permeability in Mycobacterium abscessus.  Microbiology Spectrum2022 Aug 10;e0276321. doi: 10.1128/spectrum.02763-21. Online ahead of print (2022)

263. Feng SY, Liang LJ, Shen C, Lin DX, Li JC, Lyu LX, Liang WF, Zhong LL, Cook GM, Doi YH, Chen C and GB Tian.  A CRISPR-guided mutagenic DNA polymerase strategy for the detection of antibiotic resistant mutations in M. tuberculosis.  Molecular Therapy: Nucleic Acids 2022 Jul 12;29:354-367. doi: 10.1016/j.omtn.2022.07.004. eCollection 2022

262. Adolph C, McNeil MB and GM Cook. Impaired succinate oxidation prevents growth and influences drug susceptibility in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. mBio 13:4e01672-22 (2022)

261. Allen WJ, Corey RA, Watkins DW, Oliveira ASF, Hards K, Cook GM and I Collinson.  Rate-limiting transport of positively charged arginine residues through the Sec-machinery is integral to the mechanism of protein secretion.  Elife 2022 Apr 29;11:e77586. doi: 10.7554/eLife.77586. Online ahead of print. PMID: 35486093

260. Christensen P, Racklyeft A, Ward KE, Matheson J, Suwanarusk R, Chua CYA, Osamu K, Aung HL, Rénia L, Amanzougaghene N, Magneron V, Lemaitre J, Le Grand R, Kyle D, Bifani P, Cook GM, Snounou G and B Russell.  Improving in vitro continuous cultivation of Plasmodium cynomolgi, a model for P. vivax. Parasitology International 89:102589 (2022)

259. Grant T, Rennison D, Krause A, Mros S, Ferguson SA, Cook GM, Cameron A, Arabshahi H, Brimble M, Cahill P and J Svenson. Stereochemical effects on the antimicrobial properties of tetrasubstituted 2,5-diketopiperazines.  ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters 13:632-640 (2022)

258. Harold LK, Jinich A, Hards K, Cordeiro A, Keighley LM, Cross A, McNeil MB, Rhee K. and GM Cook. Deciphering functional redundancy and energetics of malate oxidation in mycobacteria. Journal of Biological Chemistry 2022 Mar 22;101859 doi: 10.1016/j.jbc.2022.101859. Online ahead of print (2022)

257. Hawkins PME, Hoi DM, Cheung CY, Wang T, Quan D, Sasi VM, Liu DY, Linington RG, Jackson CJ, Oehlers SH, Cook GM, Britton WJ, Clausen T and RJ Payne. Potent antimycobacterials targeting the chaperone ClpC1 based on the depsipeptide natural products ecumicin and ohmyungsamycin A. Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 65:4893−4908 (2022)

256. Hards K, Cheung C-Y, Waller N, Adolph C, Keighley L, Tee ZS, Harold LK, Menorca A, Bujaroski RS, Buckley BJ, Tyndall JDA, McNeil MB, Rhee KY, Opel-Reading HK, Krause KL,Preiss L, Langer JD, Meier TK, Hasenoehrl EJ, Berney M, Kelso MJ and GM Cook.  An amiloride derivative is active against the F1Fo-ATP synthase and cytochrome bd oxidase of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Nature Communications Biology 5(1):166 doi: 10.1038/s42003-022-03110-8 (2022)

255. Cheung, C-Y, McNeil M and GM Cook.  Utilisation of CRISPR interference to investigate the contribution of genes to pathogenesis in a macrophage model of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 77(3):615-619 doi: 10.1093/jac/dkab437 (2022)

254. McNeil MB, Ryburn HW, Tirados J, Cheung CY and GM Cook. Multiplexed transcriptional repression identifies a network of bactericidal interactions between mycobacterial respiratory complexes. iScience Dec 4;25(1):103573.doi: 10.1016/j.isci.2021.103573. eCollection 2022 Jan 21 (2022)


Jeuken L, Hards K and GM Cook. Bacterial respiration keeps amazing us in the 21st century. Biochemist (Lond) bio_2021_185 Portland Press (2021)

Tran W, Kusay AS, Hawkins PME, Cheung C-Y, Nagalingam G, Pujari V, Ford DJ, Stoye A, Ochoa JL, Audette RE, Hortle E, Oehlers SH, Charman SA, Linington RG, Rubin EJ, Dowson CG, Roper DI, Crick DC, Balle T, Cook GM, Britton WJ and RJ Payne. Synthetic sansanmycin analogues as potent Mycobacterium tuberculosis translocase I inhibitors.  Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 64(23):17326-17345 (2021)

Safarian S, Opel-Reading HK, Wu D, Mehdipour AR, Hards K, Harold LK, Radloff M, Stewart I, Welsch S, Hummer G, Cook GM, Krause KL and H Michel.  The cryo-EM structure of the bd oxidase from Mycobacterium tuberculosis reveals a unique structural framework and enables rational drug design to combat tuberculosis. Nature Communications 12:5236 (2021)

McNeil MB, Keighley LM, Cook JR, Cheung CY and GM Cook. CRISPR interference identifies vulnerable cellular pathways with bactericidal phenotypes in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Molecular Microbiology 116:1033-1043 (2021)

Wu Y, Cheung CY, Zhou Y, Wang Z, Tu Z, Cook GM, and X Lu. Discovery of 5-methylpyrimidopyridone analogues as selective antimycobacterial agents. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry 49:116426 (2021)

Van Zuylen EM, Ferguson SA, Hughes A, Rennison D, Brimble MA and GM Cook. Disruption of metallostasis in the anaerobic human pathogen Fusobacterium nucleatum by the zinc ionophore PBT2. ACS Infectious Diseases 2021 Jul 14. doi: 10.1021/acsinfecdis.0c00887. Online ahead of print.

Fridianto K, Li M, Hards K, Negatu DA, Cook GM, Dick T, Lam Y and M-L Go. Functionalized dioxonaphthoimidazoliums: A redox cycling chemotype with potent bactericidal activities against Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Journal of Medicinal Chemistry  64:15991-16007 (2021)

Aung ST, Nyunt WW,Fong Y, Biggs PJ, Winkworth RC, Lockhart PJ, Yeo TW,Hill PC, Cook GM and HL Aung.Genomic profiling of Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains in Myanmar: urgent need for expanded resistance testing and new oral regimens. Emerging Infectious Diseases 27(11) 2848-2856 (2021)

Buckley BJ, Aboelela A, Majed H, Bujaroski RS, White KL, Powell AK, Wang W, Katneni K, Saunders J, Shackleford DM, Charman SA, Cook GM, Kelso MJ and M Ranson. Systematic evaluation of structure-property relationships and pharmacokinetics in 6-(hetero)aryl-substituted matched pair analogs of amiloride and 5-(N,N-hexamethylene)amiloride. Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry 37:116116 (2021)

Yu W, Buhari Y, Wang S, Tian X, Adnan Hameed HM, Lu Z, Chiwala G, Alam MS, Cook GM, Maslov DA, Zhong N and T Zhang. Sterilizing effects of novel regimens containing TB47, clofazimine and linezolid in a murine model of tuberculosis. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 65:e00706-21 (2021)

Zeng S, Zhang J, Sun M, Zhang X, Cook GM and T Zhang. Antimicrobial agents and nitric oxide-dependent electron transport chain inhibition by the cytochrome bc1 inhibitor and pretomanid combination kills Mycobacterium tuberculosis.  Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy65(9) e00956-21 (2021)

Brimble MA, Kovalenko N, Howard GK, Swain J, Hermant Y, Cameron AJ, Cook GM, Ferguson SA, Stubbing LA and Harris PWR.  A concise synthetic strategy towards the novel calcium-dependent lipopeptide antibiotic, Malacidin A and analogues. Frontiers in Chemistry Manuscript ID: 687875 (IN PRESS) 2021

Long F, Cheung C-Y, Whitman WB, Cook GM and Ronimus RS. Using genome comparisons of wild-type and resistant mutants of Methanococcus maripaludis to help understand mechanisms of resistance to methanogen inhibitors. Access Microbiology 3(7):000244 doi: 10.1099/acmi.0.000244. eCollection (2021)

Parker HA, Dickerhof N, Forrester L, Ryburn H, Smyth L, Messens J, Aung HL, Cook GM, Kettle AJ, Hampton MB. Mycobacterium smegmatis resists the bactericidal activity of hypochlorous acid produced in neutrophil phagosomes. The Journal of Immunology 206: 1901–1912 (2021)

Carere CR, Hards K, Wigley K, Carman L, Houghton KM, Cook GM and Stott MB. Growth on formic acid is dependent on intracellular pH homeostasis for the thermoacidophilic methanotroph Methylacidiphilum sp. RTK17.1. Frontiers in Microbiology Microbial 12:651744 (2021)

Lee BS, Hards K, Engelhart CA, Hasenoehrl EJ, Kalia NP, Mackenzie JS, Sviriaeva E, Chong SMS, Manimekalai MSS, Koh VH, Chan J, Xu J, Alonso S, Miller MJ, Steyn AJC, Gruber G, Schnappinger D, Berney M, Cook GM, Moraski GC, Pethe K. Dual inhibition of the terminal oxidases eradicates antibiotic-tolerant Mycobacterium tuberculosis. EMBO Molecular Medicine 13: e13207 (2021)

Davison EK, McGowan JE, Li FF, Harper AD, Jeong JY, Mros S, Harbison-Price N, Van Zuylen EM, Knottenbelt MK, Heikal A, Ferguson SA, McConnell MA, Cook GM, Krittaphol W, Walker GF, Brimble MA, Rennison D. C-2 derivatized 8-sulfonamidoquinolines as antibacterial compounds. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry 29:115837 (2021)

Badart MP, Barnes EM, Cording AP, Gilmer SCL, Billinghurst ID, Edupuganti V, Lessene G, Bland AR, Bower RL, Rana Z, Ferguson SA, Opel Reading HK, Cook GM, Rosengren RJ, Krause KL, Gamble AB, Ashton JC, Hawkins BC. Synthesis and biological evaluation of (-) and (+)-spiroleucettadine and analogues. ChemMedChem doi:10.1002/cmdc.202000954 (2021)


De Oliveira DMP, Bohlmann L, Conroy T, Jen FE, Everest-Dass A, Hansford KA, Bolisetti R, El-Deeb IM, Forde BM, Phan MD, Lacey JA, Tan A, Rivera-Hernandez T, Brouwer S, Keller N, Kidd TJ, Cork AJ, Bauer MJ, Cook GM, Davies MR, Beatson SA, Paterson DL, McEwan AG, Li J, Schembri MA, Blaskovich MAT, Jennings MP, McDevitt CA, von Itzstein M, Walker MJ.  Repurposing a neurodegenerative disease drug to treat Gram-negative antibiotic-resistant bacterial sepsis. Science Translational Medicine12, eabb3791 (2020)

McKinlay, J.B., Cook, G.M.and K. Hards. Microbial energy management – a product of three broad tradeoffs. Advances in Microbial Physiology volume 77: 139-185 (2020)

Hawkins PME, Tran W, Nagalingam G, Cheung CY, Giltrap AM, Cook GM, Britton WJ, Payne RJ.  Total synthesis and antimycobacterial activity of ohmyungsamycin A, deoxyecumicin, and ecumicin. Chemistry European Journal doi:10.1002/chem.202002408 (2020)

McDonald, S.K., Matisoo-Smith, E.A., Buckley, H.R., Walter, R.K., Aung, H.L., Collins, C.J., Cook, G.M., Kardailsky, O., Krause, J. and M. Knapp. TB or not TB – the conundrum of pre-European contact tuberculosis in the Pacific. Philosophical Transactions Royal Society Series B Biological Science 375(1812): 20190583 (2020)

de Jong, S.I., van den Broek, M.A., Merkel, A.Y., de la Torre Cortes, P., Kalamorz, F., Cook, G.M., van Loosdrecht M.C.M. and D. G. G. McMillan. Genomic analysis of Caldalkalibacillus thermarum TA2.A1 reveals aerobic alkaliphilic metabolism and evolutionary hallmarks linking alkaliphilic bacteria and plant life. Extremophiles Oct 8. doi: 10.1007/s00792-020-01205-w. Online ahead of print (2020)

Tong, J.T.W., Kavianinia, I., Fergusson, S.A., Cook, G.M., Harris, P.W.R. and M.A. Brimble. Synthesis of paenipeptin Cʹ analogues employing solution-phase CLipPA chemistry. Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry 18:4381-4385 (2020)

Shao, M., McNeil, M., Cook, G.M. and X. Lu. MmpL3 inhibitors as antituberculosis drugs. European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 200:112390 (2020)

Yim, V., Kavianinia, I., Knottenbelt, M.K., Ferguson, S.A.,Cook, G.M., Anand, V., Swift, S., Harris, P.W.R. and M.A. Brimble. “CLipP”ing on lipids to generate antibacterial lipopeptides. Chemical Science 11:5759–5765 (2020)

Grinter, R., Ney, B., Brammananth, R.,Barlow, C.K., Cordero, P.R.F., Gillett, D.L., Izoré, T., Cryle,M.J., Harold, L.K., Cook, G.M., Taiaroa, G., Williamson,D.A., Warden, A.C., Oakeshott, J.G., Taylor, M.C.,Crellin, P.K., Jackson, C.J., Schittenhelm, R.B., Coppel,R.L. and C. Greening. Cellular and structural basis of synthesis of the unique intermediatedehydro-F420-0 in mycobacteria. mSystems 5:e00389-20.

McNeil, M.B., Ryburn, H., Harold, L., Tirados, J. and G.M. Cook. Transcriptional inhibition of the F1F0-type ATP synthase has bactericidal consequences on the viability of mycobacteria. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 64(8):e00492-20 (2020)

Elnaas, A. R., D. Grice, J. Han, Y. Feng, A. D. Capua, T. Mak, J. A. Laureanti, G. W. Buchko, P. J. Myler, G. Cook, R. J. Quinn and M. Liu. Discovery of a specific binding ligand of Mycobacterium tuberculosis protein Rv1466 by native mass spectrometry. Molecules 25(10) (2020)

Santoso, K.T., Brett, M.W., Cheung, C.-Y., Cook, G.M., Stocker, B.L. and M.S.M. Timmer.  Synthesis of functionalised chromonyl-pyrimidines and their potential as antimycobacterial agents. ChemistrySelect 5:4347 –4355 (2020)

Rineh A, Soren O, McEwan T, Ravikumar V, Poh WH, Azamifar F, Naimi-Jamal MR, Cheung CY, Elliott AG, Zuegg J, Blaskovich MAT, Cooper MA, Dolange V, Christodoulides M, Cook GM, Rice SA, Faust SN, Webb JS, and MJ Kelso. Discovery of cephalosporin-3 -diazeniumdiolates that show dual antibacterial and antibiofilm effects against Pseudomonas aeruginosa clinical cystic fibrosis isolates and efficacy in a murine respiratory infection model. ACS Infectious Diseases doi:10.1021/acsinfecdis.0c00070 (2020).

Harbison-Price N, Ferguson SA, Heikal A, Taiaroa G, Hards K, Nakatani Y, Rennison D, Brimble MA, El-Deeb IM, Bohlmann L, McDevitt CA, von Itzstein M, Walker MJ, Cook GM.  Multiple Bactericidal Mechanisms of the Zinc Ionophore PBT2. mSphere 5 (2020)

Nizi, M. G., J. Desantis, Y. Nakatani, S. Massari, M. A. Mazzarella, G. Shetye, S. Sabatini, M. L. Barreca, G. Manfroni, T. Felicetti, R. Rushton-Green, K. Hards, G. Latacz, G. Satala, A. J. Bojarski, V. Cecchetti, M. H. Kolar, J. Handzlik, G. M. Cook, S. G. Franzblau and O. Tabarrini. Antitubercular polyhalogenated phenothiazines and phenoselenazine with reduced binding to CNS receptors. European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry201:112420 (2020)

Chong SMS, Manimekalai MSS, Sarathy JP, Williams ZC, Harold LK, Cook GM, Dick T, Pethe K, Bates RW, Gruber G.  Antituberculosis Activity of the Antimalaria Cytochrome bcc Oxidase Inhibitor SCR0911. ACS Infect Dis 6:725-737 (2020)

Hards K, Adolph C, Harold LK, McNeil MB, Cheung CY, Jinich A, Rhee KY, Cook GM.  2020. Two for the price of one: Attacking the energetic-metabolic hub of mycobacteria to produce new chemotherapeutic agents. Prog Biophys Mol Biol 152:35-44.

Lee BM, Harold LK, Almeida DV, Afriat-Jurnou L, Aung HL, Forde BM, Hards K, Pidot SJ, Ahmed FH, Mohamed AE, Taylor MC, West NP, Stinear TP, Greening C, Beatson SA, Nuermberger EL, Cook GM, Jackson CJ.  2020. Predicting nitroimidazole antibiotic resistance mutations in Mycobacterium tuberculosis with protein engineering. PLoS Pathog 16:e1008287.

McGowan JE, Harper AD, Davison EK, Jeong JY, Mros S, Harbison-Price N, Van Zuylen EM, Knottenbelt MK, Heikal A, Ferguson SA, McConnell MA, Cook GM, Krittaphol W, Walker GF, Brimble MA, Rennison D.  2020. Substituted sulfonamide bioisosteres of 8-hydroxyquinoline as zinc-dependent antibacterial compounds. Bioorg Med Chem Lett doi:10.1016/j.bmcl.2020.127110:127110.

Nakatani Y, Shimaki Y, Dutta D, Muench SP, Ireton K, Cook GM, Jeuken LJC.  2020. Unprecedented Properties of Phenothiazines Unraveled by a NDH-2 Bioelectrochemical Assay Platform. J Am Chem Soc 142:1311-1320.


Aung HL, Devine TJ, Mulholland CV, Arcus VL, Cook GM.  2019. Tackling tuberculosis in the indigenous people of New Zealand. Lancet Public Health 4:e496.

Buckley BJ, Majed H, Aboelela A, Minaei E, Jiang L, Fildes K, Cheung CY, Johnson D, Bachovchin D, Cook GM, Huang M, Ranson M, Kelso MJ.  2019. 6-Substituted amiloride derivatives as inhibitors of the urokinase-type plasminogen activator for use in metastatic disease. Bioorg Med Chem Lett 29:126753.

Cordero PRF, Grinter R, Hards K, Cryle MJ, Warr CG, Cook GM, Greening C.  2019. Two uptake hydrogenases differentially interact with the aerobic respiratory chain during mycobacterial growth and persistence. J Biol Chem 294:18980-18991.

Darnell RL, Knottenbelt MK, Todd Rose FO, Monk IR, Stinear TP, Cook GM.  2019. Genomewide Profiling of the Enterococcus faecalis Transcriptional Response to Teixobactin Reveals CroRS as an Essential Regulator of Antimicrobial Tolerance. mSphere 4.

Darnell RL, Nakatani Y, Knottenbelt MK, Gebhard S, Cook GM.  2019. Functional characterization of BcrR: a one-component transmembrane signal transduction system for bacitracin resistance. Microbiology 165:475-487.

Ferguson SA, Menorca A, Van Zuylen EM, Cheung CY, McConnell MA, Rennison D, Brimble MA, Bodle K, McDougall S, Cook GM, Heikal A.  2019. Microtiter Screening Reveals Oxygen-Dependent Antimicrobial Activity of Natural Products Against Mastitis-Causing Bacteria. Front Microbiol 10:1995.

Greening C, Geier R, Wang C, Woods LC, Morales SE, McDonald MJ, Rushton-Green R, Morgan XC, Koike S, Leahy SC, Kelly WJ, Cann I, Attwood GT, Cook GM, Mackie RI.  2019. Diverse hydrogen production and consumption pathways influence methane production in ruminants. ISME J 13:2617-2632.

Hards K, Rodriguez SM, Cairns C, Cook GM.  2019. Alternate quinone coupling in a new class of succinate dehydrogenase may potentiate mycobacterial respiratory control. FEBS Lett 593:475-486.

Kelly, W.J., Leahy, S.C., Kamke, J., Soni, P., Koike, S., Mackie, R., Seshadri, R., Cook, G.M., Morales, S.E., Greening, C. and G.T. Attwood. Occurrence and expression of genes encoding methyl-compound production in rumen bacteria. Animal Microbiome 1:1-13 (2019)

Smith, R.J., Bower, R.L., Ferguson, S.A., Rosengren, R.J., Cook, G.M. and B.C. Hawkins. The synthesis of (±)-oxyisocyclointegrin. European Journal of Organic Chemistry 2019:1571-1573 (2019)

Harold LK, Antoney J, Ahmed FH, Hards K, Carr PD, Rapson T, Greening C, Jackson CJ, Cook GM.  2019. FAD-sequestering proteins protect mycobacteria against hypoxic and oxidative stress. J Biol Chem 294:2903-2912.

Hasenoehrl EJ, Rae Sajorda D, Berney-Meyer L, Johnson S, Tufariello JM, Fuhrer T, Cook GM, Jacobs WR, Jr., Berney M.  2019. Derailing the aspartate pathway of Mycobacterium tuberculosis to eradicate persistent infection. Nat Commun 10:4215.

Lu X, Williams Z, Hards K, Tang J, Cheung CY, Aung HL, Wang B, Liu Z, Hu X, Lenaerts A, Woolhiser L, Hastings C, Zhang X, Wang Z, Rhee K, Ding K, Zhang T, Cook GM.  2019. Pyrazolo[1,5- a]pyridine Inhibitor of the Respiratory Cytochrome bcc Complex for the Treatment of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis. ACS Infect Dis 5:239-249.

McNeil MB, Cook GM.  2019. Utilization of CRISPR Interference To Validate MmpL3 as a Drug Target in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 63.

Momin MAM, Rangnekar B, Sinha S, Cheung CY, Cook GM, Das SC.  2019. Inhalable Dry Powder of Bedaquiline for Pulmonary Tuberculosis: In Vitro Physicochemical Characterization, Antimicrobial Activity and Safety Studies. Pharmaceutics 11.

Mulholland CV, Shockey AC, Aung HL, Cursons RT, O'Toole RF, Gautam SS, Brites D, Gagneux S, Roberts SA, Karalus N, Cook GM, Pepperell CS, Arcus VL.  2019. Dispersal of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Driven by Historical European Trade in the South Pacific. Front Microbiol 10:2778.

Petri J, Nakatani Y, Montgomery MG, Ferguson SA, Aragao D, Leslie AGW, Heikal A, Walker JE, Cook GM.  2019. Structure of F1-ATPase from the obligate anaerobe Fusobacterium nucleatum. Open Biol 9:190066.

Rushton-Green R, Darnell RL, Taiaroa G, Carter GP, Cook GM, Morgan XC.  2019. Agricultural Origins of a Highly Persistent Lineage of Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococcus faecalis in New Zealand. Appl Environ Microbiol 85.

Santoso KT, Cheung CY, Hards K, Cook GM, Stocker BL, Timmer MSM.  2019. Synthesis and Investigation of Phthalazinones as Antitubercular Agents. Chem Asian J 14:1278-1285.

Santoso KT, Menorca A, Cheung CY, Cook GM, Stocker BL, Timmer MSM.  2019. The synthesis and evaluation of quinolinequinones as anti-mycobacterial agents. Bioorg Med Chem 27:3532-3545.

Saw WG, Wu ML, Ragunathan P, Biukovic G, Lau AM, Shin J, Harikishore A, Cheung CY, Hards K, Sarathy JP, Bates RW, Cook GM, Dick T, Gruber G.  2019. Disrupting coupling within mycobacterial F-ATP synthases subunit epsilon causes dysregulated energy production and cell wall biosynthesis. Sci Rep 9:16759.

Zhang AT, Montgomery MG, Leslie AGW, Cook GM, Walker JE.  2019. The structure of the catalytic domain of the ATP synthase from Mycobacterium smegmatis is a target for developing antitubercular drugs. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 116:4206-4211.

Selected publications (2014-2018)

Bohlmann, L., De Oliveira, D.M.P., El-Deeb, I.M., Brazel, E.B., Harbison-Price, N., Ong, C.-L.Y., Rivera-Hernandez, T., Ferguson, S.A., Cork, A.J., Phan, M.-D., Soderholm, A.T., Davies, M.R., Nimmo, G.R., Dougan, G., Schembri, M.A., Cook, G.M., McEwan, A.G., von Itzstein, M., McDevitt, C.A. and M. J. Walker. Chemical synergy between ionophore PBT2 and zinc reverses antibiotic resistance. mBio 9:e02391-18 (2018)

Hards, K., McMillan, D.G.G., Schurig-Briccio, L.A., Gennis, R.B., Lill, H., Bald, B.D. and G.M. Cook.  Ionophoric effects of the antitubercular drug bedaquiline. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 115:7326-7331 (2018)

Zhang, S., De Leon Rodriguez, Leung, I.K.H., Cook, G.M., Harris, P.W.R. and M.A. Brimble. Total synthesis and conformational study of the anti-tubercular cyclic peptide callyaerin A bearing a rare rigidifying (Z)-2,3-diaminoacrylamide moiety. Angewandte Chemie International Edition 57:3631-3635 (2018)

Cook, G.M.,Hards, K., Dunn, E., Heikal, A., Nakatani, Y., Greening, C., Crick, D.C., Fontes, F.L., Pethe, K., Hasenoehrl, E. and Berney, M. OXPHOS as a target space for tuberculosis: success, caution, and future directions. In Tuberculosis and the Tubercle Bacillus Third Edition, Edited by William R. Jacobs, Jr., Helen McShane, Valerie Mizrahi and Ian Orme. American Society for Microbiology, Washington, DC. Microbiol Spectrum 5(2): doi:10.1128/microbiolspec.

Kalia, N.P., Hasenoehrl, E.J., Ab Rahman, N.B., Koh, V.H., Ang, M.L., Sajorda, D.R., Hards, K., Grüber, G., Alonso, S., Cook, G.M., Berney, M. and Pethe, K. Exploiting the synthetic lethality between terminal respiratory oxidases to kill Mycobacterium tuberculosis and clear host infection. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 114:7426-7431 (2017)

Weimar, M.R., Cheung, J., Dey, D., McSweeney, C., Morrison, M., Kobayashi, Y., Whitman, W.B., Carbone, V., Schofield, L.R., Ronimus, R.S. and Cook, G.M. Development of multi-well plate methods using pure cultures of methanogens to identify new inhibitors for suppressing ruminant methane emissions. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 83:e00396-17 (2017)

Ferguson, S.F., Cook, G.M., Montgomery, M.G., Leslie, A.G.W. and Walker, J.E. The regulation of the thermoalkaliphilic F1-ATPase from Caldalkalibacillus thermarum. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2016 2016 Sep 12. pii: 201612035. [Epub ahead of print] PMID:27621435

Cook, G.M. and Poole, R.K. A bacterial oxidase like no other? Science 352: 518-519 (2016) PMID: 27126025

Greening, C., Biswas, A., Carere, C.R., Jackson, C.J., Taylor, M.C., Stott, M.B., Cook, G.M., Morales, S.E. Genomic and metagenomic surveys of hydrogenase distribution indicate H2 is a universal energy source for microbial growth and survival. The ISME Journal 10:761-77 (2015)

Greening, C., Carere, C.R., Rushton-Green, R., Harold, L.K., Hards, K., Taylor, M.C., Morales, S.E., Stott, M.B. and Cook, G.M. Persistence of dominant soil phylum Acidobacteria by trace gas scavenging. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 112:10497–10502 (2015)

Hards, K., Robson, J., Berney, M., Shaw, L., Bald, D., Koul, A., Andries, K. and Cook, G.M. Bactericidal mode of action of bedaquiline. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 70:2028–2037 (2015)

Cook, G.M., Greening, C., Hards, K. and Berney, M. Energetics of pathogenic bacteria and opportunities for drug development. Advances in Microbial Physiology - Advances in Bacterial Pathogen Biology 65:1-62. Epub 2014 Nov 4.

Hartman, T.,Weinrick, B., Vilchèze, C., Berney, M., Tufariello, J., Cook, G.M. and Jacobs, W.R. Jr. Succinate dehydrogenase is the regulator of respiration in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. PLoS Pathogens 10: e1004510 (2014)

Berney, M., Greening, C., Conrad, R., Jacobs, W.R. and Cook, G.M. An obligately aerobic soil bacterium activates fermentative hydrogen production to survive reductive stress during hypoxia. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 111:11479–11484 (2014) 

Pecsi, I., Hards, K., Ekanayaka, N., Berney, M., Hartman, T., Jacobs Jr., W.R. and Cook, G.M. Essentiality of succinate dehydrogenase in Mycobacterium smegmatis and its role in the generation of the membrane potential under hypoxia. mBio 5(4):e01093-14 (2014) 

Kingston, A.W., Zhao, H., Cook, G.M. and Helmann, J.D. Accumulation of heptaprenyl diphosphate sensitizes Bacillus subtilis to bacitracin: Implications for the mechanism of resistance mediated by the BceAB transporter. Molecular Microbiology 93:37-49 (2014)

Greening, C., Berney, M., Hards, K., Cook, G.M.*, Conrad, R.* A soil actinobacterium scavenges atmospheric H2 using two membrane-associated, oxygen-dependent [NiFe]-hydrogenases. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 111:4257–4261 (2014)

Heikal, A., Nakatani, Y., Dunn, E., Weimar, M.R., Day, C., Baker, E.N., Lott, J.S., Sazanov, L.A. and Cook, G.M.* Structure of the bacterial type II NADH dehydrogenase: a monotopic membrane protein with an essential role in energy generation. Molecular Microbiology 91:950–964 (2014) Cover of Journal

Berney, M., Greening, C., Hards, K., Collins, D.M. and Cook, G.M.* Three different [NiFe]-hydrogenases confer metabolic flexibility in the obligate aerobe Mycobacterium smegmatis. Environmental Microbiology 16:318–330 (2014)

Previous group members 

Postdoctoral or Research Fellows

Dr Kiel Hards, 2017-2022

Dr Liam Harold, 2019-21

Dr Yosuke Shimaki, 2016-20

Dr Yoshio Nakatani, 2014-20

Dr Htin Aung, 2014-2018

Dr Roman Mortuza, 2017-18

Dr Jess Petri, 2017

Dr Michael Petridis, 2015-2017

Dr Adam Heikal, 2010-2016

Dr Ildiko Pecsi, 2012-2016

Dr Jennifer Robson, 2010-2014

Dr Michael Berney, 2007-2012

Dr Naohiro Taniguichi, 2009-2012

Dr Falk Kalamorz, 2009-2011

Dr Jonathan Gauntlett, 2008

Dr Duncan McMillan, 2008-2009

Dr Scott Ferguson, 2007-2008

Dr Susanne Gebhard, 2006 – 2009

Dr Sunil Ratnayake, 2003

Dr Stefanie Keis, 2001 – 2008

Sieu Tran, 2000-2007

PhD students

Carmel Donald, 2019-22

Francesca Todd Rose 2019-22

George Taiaroa, 2015-22

Cecelia Wang, 2018-22

Euan Russell, 2017-2022

Essie Van Zuylen, 2018-22

Peter R. Christensen, 2018-21

Cara Adolph, 2017-21

Nichaela Harbison-Price, 2017-20

Reuben Vercoe, 2015-20

Zoe Williams, 2016-19

Liam Harold, 2015-19

Rachel Darnell, 2014-17

Kiel Hards, 2014-17

Jessica Petri, 2013–16

Michael Petridis, 2012-15

Elyse Dunn, 2012-15

Chris Greening, 2010-14 

Marina Iglesias Cans, 2010-14

Htin Lin Aung, 2010-13

Aishath Shaaly, 2006-13

Nandula Ekanayaka, 2008-13

Rebekah Frampton, 2008-11

Jennifer Robson, 2005-2010

Anja Humpel, 2005-2010

Sui Mae Lee, 2004-2009

Pearl Swe, 2004-2008

Duncan McMillan, 2004-2008

Jonathan Gauntlett, 2004-2008

Rebecca McDougal, 2003-2007

Scott Ferguson, 2003-2007

Susanne Gebhard, 2003-2006

Matthew James Shirley, 1999-2006

Rajan Prasad Adhikari, 2000-2004

Karen Olsson, 2001-2004

Janet Manson, 2000-2004

MSc students

Alaska Kotan 2020-2022

Alex Krause 2017-19

Melanie Knottenbelt 2016-18

Lisa Shaw, 2008-2010

Marion R. Weimar, 2009

Faith Cox, 2004-2006

Pearl Swe, 2001-2003

Cameron Simmers, 2001-2003

Ian Monk, 2001-2003

Richard Udy, 1999-2001

Connor Wright, 2000-2002

Rebecca McDougal, 2000-2002

Craig Anderson, 1999-2001

Katherine A. Young 1998-2000

Kere R. Kobayashi, 1998-1999