• Alumni

Ruth Bastow

Head of ELIXIR-UK Co-ordination office


Ruth joined the Earlham Institute in 2017 to head up the ELIXIR-UK Node Coordination Office, which acts as a focal point for UK activities under the ELIXIR umbrella (data, tools, compute, standards and training in the biological sciences) and provides a bridge to the larger European wide ELIXIR project that brings together a wide range of bioinformatics resources in the life sciences.

Previously Ruth served as the Executive Director of the Global Plant Council and subsequent to that she worked as the coordinator for the UK Arabidopsis Research Network, GARNet. In collaboration with colleagues at GARNet, Ruth established the UK Plant Sciences Federation (UKPSF) in 2009 and was awarded the Society of Biology President’s Medal for her support of the UK plant sciences community.

Before pursuing a career in science administration and policy Ruth’s research focused on the plant sciences. She carried out her PhD in the lab of Professor Andrew Millar and was a postdoctoral researcher in the labs of Professor Caroline Dean and Professor Julie Gray. Ruth has a strong background in project, conference and scientific management and over the last decade has been involved in a number of data standards, interoperability and ontology projects.


Data management and best practice for plant science.

Leonelli S, Davey RP, Arnaud E, Parry G, Bastow R. Nature Plants 6 (3) (2017)

Making open data work for plant scientists.

Leonelli S, Smirnoff N, Moore J, Cook C, Bastow R.  Journal of Experimental Botany 64 (14) 4109-17 (2013)

International Arabidopsis Informatics Consortium Taking the next step: building an Arabidopsis information portal.

Plant Cell 24(6) 2248-56. (2012)

Sustainable digital infrastructure. Although databases and other online resources have become a central tool for biological research, their long-term support and maintenance is far from secure.

Bastow RM, Leonelli S. EMBO Reports 11(10) 730-4. (2010)

Vernalization requires epigenetic silencing of FLC by histone methylation.

Bastow RM, Mylne JS, Lippman Z, Martienssen RA, Dean,C.  Nature. 427,164-7 (2004)

Plant sciences. Deciding when to flower.

Bastow RM, Dean C.  Science. 302,1695-6 (2003)

The ELF3 zeitnehmer regulates light signaling to the circadian clock.

McWatters, H.G.*, Bastow, R.M.*, Hall A., Millar, A.J.Nature  408,716-718 (2000). * Joint first author.

Related reading.