Dr Ghader Bashiri


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Senior Research Fellow

Research | Current

I am interested in understanding protein structure and function as a means of addressing biological mechanisms. I am a structural biologist by training and use a wide range of biophysical and biochemical tools and “omics” technologies to gain a better understanding of proteis within basic and translational context.

My current research interest is bacterial biochemistry and physiology, focusing on Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria that cause TB. The overall aim of my research is to explore new approaches/targets to combating persistence, which is the major roadblock to improved TB therapy. TB kills more than any other infectious disease in the world today; more than malaria and AIDS combined!

The majority of my research focuses on the followings topics;

  • Coenzyme F420 metabolism. I have a long-standing interest in investigating the role of coenzyme F420 in the biology and pathogenesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of TB.
  • Iron-sulfur proteins. I am currently studying essential proteins utilising iron-sulfur clusters and also biogenesis of these clusters in mycobacteria.
  • Menaquinone metabolism. Menaquinone is the only electron carrier in the respiratory chain of mycobacteria. We investigate the biosynthesis and regulation of this pathway with the ultimate goal of developing a new generation of anti-TB agents. This project is conducted in conjunction with Dr. Jodie Johnston, University of Auckland.

In collaboration with Associate Professor Alok Mitra and Dr. Mazdak Radjainia, I am also involved in studying diabetes-related proteins. The ultimate goal of this project is to develop novel and effective anti-diabetic and anti-obesity therapeutic agents.


Postgraduate supervision

I have been co-supervising BioMed Honours, Masters and PhD students. Please contact me for available postgraduate projects. 

Areas of expertise

Structural and Molecular Biology, Protein Biochemistry

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Jirgis, E. N. M., Bashiri, G., Bulloch, E. M. M., Johnston, J. M., & Baker, E. N. (2016). Structural views along the Mycobacterium tuberculosis MenD reaction pathway illuminate key aspects of thiamin diphosphate-dependent enzyme mechanisms. Structure, 24 (7), 1167-1177. 10.1016/j.str.2016.04.018
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Jodie Johnston, Edward Baker, Esther Bulloch
  • Bashiri, G., Rehan, A. M., Sreebhavan, S., Baker, H. M., Baker, E. N., & Squire, C. J. (2016). Elongation of the poly-γ-glutamate tail of F₄₂₀ requires both domains of the F₄₂₀:γ-glutamyl ligase (FbiB) of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 291 (13), 6882-6894. 10.1074/jbc.M115.689026
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/29806
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Christopher Squire, Edward Baker
  • Ankisettypalli, K., Cheng, J. J. Y., Baker, E. N., & Bashiri, G. (2016). PdxH proteins of mycobacteria are typical members of the classical pyridoxine/pyridoxamine 5′-phosphate oxidase family. FEBS Letters, 590 (4), 453-460. 10.1002/1873-3468.12080
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Edward Baker
  • Bashiri, G., Johnston, J. M., Evans, G. L., Bulloch, E. M. M., Goldstone, D. C., Jirgis, E. N. M., ... Manos-Turvey, A. (2015). Structure and inhibition of subunit I of the anthranilate synthase complex of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and expression of the active complex. Acta Crystallographica Section D: Biological Crystallography, 71, 2297-2308. 10.1107/S1399004715017216
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Edward Baker, Jodie Johnston, Esther Bulloch, David Goldstone, Rochelle Ramsay, Shaun Lott
  • Bunker, R. D., Mandal, K., Bashiri, G., Chaston, J. J., Pentelute, B. L., Lott, J. S., ... Baker, E. N. (2015). A functional role of Rv1738 in Mycobacterium tuberculosis persistence suggested by racemic protein crystallography. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 112 (14), 4310-4315. 10.1073/pnas.1422387112
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Shaun Lott, Edward Baker
  • Bashiri, G., & Baker, E. N. (2015). Production of recombinant proteins in Mycobacterium smegmatis for structural and functional studies. Protein science : a publication of the Protein Society, 24 (1), 1-10. 10.1002/pro.2584
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Edward Baker
  • Jung, J., Bashiri, G., Johnston, J., Brown, A., Ackerley, D., & Baker, E. (2014). Crystal structure of M. tuberculosis phosphopantetheinyl transferase PptT. Acta Crystallographica Section A Foundations and Advances. 10.1107/S2053273314091840
  • Jung, J., Bashiri, G., Johnston, J., Brown, A., Ackerley, D., & Baker, E. (2014). Crystal structure of M. tuberculosis phosphopantetheinyl transferase PptT. Paper presented at 23rd IUCr (International Union of Crystallography) Congress, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. 5 August - 12 August 2014. Acta Crystallographica Section A: Abstracts of the XXIII IUCr Congress. (pp. 1). 10.1107/S2053273314091840

Contact details

Primary office location

Level 4, Room 472
New Zealand