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Professor John Pickett FRS

Professor John Pickett


Professor of Biological Chemistry

School of Chemistry

John is Professor of Biological Chemistry with particular interests in chemical ecology involving chemically mediated interactions between various organisms including pests attacking plants and animals.

  • Chemical characterisation of pheromones and other semiochemicals of plants, and animals including insect pests, extending to beneficial organisms antagonistic to pests
  • Stress related chemical signalling by plants and vertebrates including human and farm animals
  • Elucidating biosynthetic pathways to pheromones and other semiochemicals together with associated molecular genetics
  • Exploiting pheromones and other semiochemicals in management of pests and beneficial organisms by ecology management and genetic modification (GM)

John’s contributions to the field of chemical ecology have been acknowledged with the 1995 Rank Prize for Nutrition and Crop Husbandry, election to Fellowship of the Royal Society in 1996, membership of the Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina in 2001, International Society of Chemical Ecology Medal in 2002, appointment to CBE for services to Biological Chemistry in 2004, and the Wolf Foundation Prize in Agriculture in 2008, among many other honours.

He also presented, in 2008, the Royal Society’s premier lecture in the biological sciences, The Croonian Prize Lecture, and the Cornell University Lecture in 2009. He was awarded the International Congress of Entomology Certificate of Distinction, presented at the XXIV International Congress of Entomology in Daegu, Korea. In April 2014, he was elected Foreign Associate of the National Academy of Sciences and, in June 2014, he became President of the Royal Entomological Society.