Balint Stewart

2017-04-27 18.06.07 HDR

I’m interested in understanding how cells detect, respond to, and interact with other cells in cooperation and in conflict both within and between species. My PhD applied a combination of directed evolution and functional genomics approaches to understand the genetics undepinning bacterial prey preferences and fitness trade-offs in growth in the professional phagocyte D. discoideum. Since starting my postdoc in 2015 I have been investigating how Dictyostelium is able to modulate investment in cooperative common goods according to its frequency within the group, and what consequences this has on collective fitness. I’m now interested in elucidating the genetic and molecular mechansims by which Dictyostelium are able to detect quora within mixed cooperative groups and then modulate their behaviour accordingly.

I graduated from the University of Manchester in June 2010 having spent a year on placement at the MRC in the Gambia in 2009, studying the emergence of drug resistance in HIV/Hepatitis B coinfected patients. My final year project looked at the evolution of phenotypic antibiotic tolerance in E. coli with Dr Daniel Rozen.  In my spare time I enjoy travel, cooking and music.




Gruenheit N, Parkinson K, Brimson C, Kuwana S, Johnson E, Nagayama K; Llewellyn J; Salvidge W; Stewart B, Keller T, Van Zon W, Cotter S; Thompson CRL. Cell Cycle Heterogeneity Can Generate Robust Cell Type Proportioning. Developmental Cell 47(4):494-508

Madgwick PG*, Stewart B*, Belcher LJ, Thompson CRL, Wolf JB. Strategic investment explains patterns of cooperation and cheating in a microbe. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 115(21)

*these authors contributed equally to this work


Cocorocchio M, Baldwin AJ, Stewart B, Kim L, Harwood AJ, Thompson CRL, Andrews PLR, Williams RSB. Curcumin and derivatives function through protein phosphatase 2A and presenilin orthologues in Dictyostelium discoideum. Disease models and mechanisms.

Gruenheit N, Parkinson K, Stewart B, Howie JA, Wolf JB, Thompson CRL. A polychromatic ‘greenbeard’ locus determines patterns of cooperation in a social amoeba. Nature Communications. 8:14171.


Stewart B, Rozen DE (2012). Genetic variation for antibiotic persistence in E. coli Evolution. 66(3):933-9.


Stewart B, Jobarteh ML, Sarge-Njie R, Alabi A, de Silva T, Peterson K, Peterson I, Whittle H, Rowland-Jones S, Jaye A, Cotten M, Mendy M. (2012). Emergence of HBV resistance to lamivudine (3TC) in HIV/HBV co-infected patients in the Gambia, West Africa. BMC Res Notes. 4:561