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An Interview with Jerzy Behnke


Describe your work in a Twitter post (140 characters)

“Parasitic helminthology”

How did you get to where you are now?

“I carried out my undergraduate BSc in Zoology at Southampton University, and then moved to Bedford where I carried out my PhD. I spent a short time at Glasgow University, and have been at the University of Nottingham since 1987”

What is your proudest work-related moment to date?

“When my paper on the immunomodulation by Heligmosomoides was published (J.M.Behnke, J.Hannah & D.I.Prichard (1983). Nematospiroides dubius in the mouse: evidence that the adult worm depresses the expression of homologous immunity. Parasite Immunology 5, 397-408)”

What’s the worst job you have ever had?

“When I was a construction worker

If you had left academia in a parallel universe, what job would you be doing instead?

“I’d love to be a train driver or truck driver.”

Apart from Cardiff (or Wales), where is the best place you have ever travelled for work?

“It has to be when I went to Nairobi.”

What’s your favourite parasite?

Heligmosomoides bakeri

If you had to be infected with a parasite what would you pick?

It would have to be the hookworm Necator americanus

What would be your specialist subject on Mastermind be?

“It would have to be Helminthology – the life and times of helminths!”

What’s your favourite type of cheese?



To find about more about Jerzy Behnke’s research at the School of Life Sciences, University of Nottingham have a look at his website:

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