Prof Anthony C. Hilton

Life & Health Sciences School

Deputy Executive Dean
Professor of Applied Microbiology
Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
Fellow of the Society of Biology
Fellow of the Institute of Biomedical Science
National Teaching Fellow 2011
Director of Microbiology Consulting

School of Life & HealthScience
Aston University

Aston Triangle

B4 7ET

Phone:  +44 (0)1212043960
Mobile: 07703 716512 
Skype: use the Call me button below.

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Microbiology Course Video (Overview)

Microbiology Course Video (Overview)
2009 -  Reader in Microbiology / Head of Biology & Biomedical Science   Aston University 
2005 - 2009  Senior Lecturer in Microbiology / Programme Director - Biology / BMS   Aston University 
2000 - 2005 Lecturer in Microbiology / Biology Admissions Tutor,  Aston University 
1997 - 2000 Lecturer in Food Microbiology,  University of Birmingham 
1996 - 1997 Clinical Scientist,  Birmingham Heartlands Hospital 
1993 - 1996 PhD,  University of Birmingham (Supervisor:  Prof. C.W. Penn)
1989 - 1993 BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences (Class I; Rank 1st)  University of Wolverhampton
  • Applied microbiology
    • Food
    • Clinical
  • Molecular microbiology
  • Salmonella, Campylobacter,  MRSA and Escherichia coli  O157, Clostridium difficile
  • Molecular epidemiology & typing of microorganisms
  • Insect vectors of disease 
An increasing number of litigation cases in the UK involve microbiology information that would benefit from expert critical review, interpretation or further development.  Through Microbiology Consulting Ltd I am able to offer expert professional advice in all aspects of microbiology to assist in developing a robust body of evidence to support these cases.  With over 20 years experience in applied microbiological aspects of food, industrial and clinical microbiology, I have been offering professional microbiology advice to the legal sector for over ten years primarily in cases of personal injury resulting from infections acquired at home and as a result of travel and tourism.  For further information please visit the Microbiology Consulting website  contact meto discuss your requirements. I am also able to offer comprehensive microbiological sampling and product testing services.
Anthony Hilton
  • Engaging the public with microbiology
  • Science communication
  • Microbiology education
  • Working with the media
  • Working with the legal sector
  • Inspiring children with science / microbiology
  • Matthew Davies  - Role of flying insects in the spread of hospital-associated pathogens
  • Preena Mistry Salmonella carriage in companion animals
  • Amreen Bashir - Control of Salmonella in food manufacturing environments

Anthony Hilton - Grime Scene Investigation

Grime Scene Investigation was an eight-part television series broadcast on BBC3 during Autumn 2006. In each episode a team of scientists in their mobile laboratory would visit a member of the public to reveal the hidden world of microbes living in, on and around them.

If you would like to receive a lecture on the microbiology behind Grime Scene Investigation to your group or institution please email me. The lecture can be delivered to accommodate all levels of interest in microbiology.  An example of a recent lecture to over 600 year 12 students can be viewed here.
Watch an episode of Grime Scene Investigation online, click on the links.   (Large files)
I have also been involved with other microbiology projects of general interest to the public including a study of  bacteria found in cars, on  mobile phones, on the  hands and under the  fingernails.  In recognition of my contribution to the public understanding of microbiology I received the 2009  Society for Applied Microbiology Communication Award and the  Aston Excellence Awardfor outstanding contribution to community engagement.  In September 2009 I delivered the Vincent Marks lecture at the Institute of Biomedical Science congress in Birmingham.  During 2010 I appeared at several Cafe Scientifique venues in  Medway and  Birmingham and also at the  Cheltenham and  British Science Festivals.  In 2011 the  Society for General Microbiology honoured me with the  Peter Wildy award for outstanding contribution to microbiology education.

The Cheltenham Science Festival 2010 - Stopping the Spread of Superbugs

In 2010 I was involved in an innovative project sponsored by the Society for General Microbiology which sought to engage the public in the implications of MRSA infection told through the medium of a short play supported by a panel of microbiology experts.  You can watch the play on the Microbiology Online website.  Also available is an interview with Dr Tony Berendt which addresses all the frequently asked questions regarding MRSA infection.

View videos on Microbiology Online >>

The Cheltenham Science Festival 2011 - Microbes on the Menu

People tend to have a generally negative perception of the relationship between microbes and food.  In 2011 I hosted a banquet meal to challenge this assumption where everything on the menu was as a result of the beneficial role microbes play either as a direct source of food or in the biological transformation brought about by fermentation.  You can watch the banquet meal as it is prepared live on stage with a running commentary of the role of the microbes on the Microbiology Online website.  The event was such a success we ran it again in  Einstein's Garden at the Green Man Festival in 2011.

View videos on Microbiology Online >>

Check out my  Guardian Science Weeklypodcast  here  in my mission to educate the public about germs. How are food poisoning bugs spread around the home? How many household germs are truly dangerous? Can we really build up our immunity by NOT being hygienic?

Have you ever worried about how many bacterial ‘nasties’ are lurking on the buttons of cash machines, pelican-crossings and railings in public places?  What about on the bus, train or in your car?  And then of course there are those bugs in your office: on your computer keyboard and hiding in the fax machine, telephone handset and photocopier.  

In a series of three articles broadcast on BBC One's The One Show I set off to find out. Click on the images below to watch the episodes and find out more. You might be surprised what I found.

The One Show - On the Highstreet
On the Highstreet
The One Show - In the Studio
In the Studio
The One Show - On Public Transport
On Public Transport

The World of Microbiology - Mastering the Invisible, Invincible, Treatable & Preventable is a two-day microbiology course for Year 10/11 school children to introduce them to microorganisms and their role in health and disease.  The project was initially funded by the Wellcome Trust and continuation funding from The Society for Applied Microbiology.

You can watch an overview of the course by clicking on the image below and download the associated course handbook here.

Particular aspects covered in the course include those detailed in the videos below.  By clicking on the images you can watch the lectures which were recorded during a recent visit to a local high school in Birmingham.

Microbiology Roadshow - Overview of the Course
Overview of the Course
Microbiology for Schools - Introduction to Microbiology
Introduction to Microbiology
Microbiology for Schools - Introduction to Foodpoisoning
Foodborne Infection
The New Optimists

The New Optimists

In The New Optimists, over 80 of the UK's leading medics, life scientists, engineers, chemists, computer and digital media scientists, environmental and energy experts have combined to share their views of a brighter future. I was one of those scientists.  

You can learn more about my contribution and that of others by visiting the new optimists websiteand even purchase the book to read it for yourself here.

Statistical Analysis in Microbiology

Statistical Analysis in Microbiology

This book is aimed primarily at microbiologists who are undertaking research, and who require a basic knowledge of statistics to analyse their experimental data. Computer software employing a wide range of data analysis methods is widely available to experimental scientists. The availability of this software, however, makes it even more essential that microbiologists understand the basic principles of statistics. Statistical analysis of data can be complex with many different methods of approach, each of which applies in a particular experimental circumstance. In addition, most statistical software commercially available is complex and difficult to use. Hence, it is easy to apply an incorrect statistical method to data and to draw the wrong conclusions from an experiment.

The purpose of this book is an attempt to present the basic logic of statistics as clearly as possible and therefore, to dispel some of the myths that often surround the subject. The book is presented as a series of 'Statnotes', many of which were originally published in the 'Microbiologist' by the Society for Applied Microbiology, each of which deals with various topics including the nature of variables, comparing the means of two or more groups, non-parametric statistics, analysis of variance, correlating variables, and more complex methods such as multiple linear regression and factor analysis. In each case, the relevant statistical methods are illustrated with scenarios and real experimental data drawn from experiments in microbiology. The text will incorporate a glossary of the most commonly used statistical terms and a section to aid the investigator to select the most appropriate test.

Find out more about this book here or check out Amazon to purchase your copy.
K.J. Parker, D.L.Rathbone, P.A.Lambert, M.D.Coleman, A.C.Hilton, A. Worthington, D.C. Billington. (2006) Anti-Bacterial Compounds. International Patent, Application Number PCT/GB2006/000101, Filing date: 12.01.06, Priority date: 12.01.05 

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