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Veitch, Nigel

Photo of Nigel Veitch
Job title: 

Senior Phytochemist

Department: 
Jodrell Laboratory
Section: 
Sustainable Uses
Joined Kew: 

1992

Foreign languages: 

Danish

Qualifications and appointments: 
  • BA (Hons), University of Oxford, 1988
  • MA, University of Oxford, 1992
  • DPhil, University of Oxford, 1992
  • EMBO Visiting Research Fellow, University of Copenhagen (1989)
  • Harmsworth Senior Scholar, Merton College, Oxford (1989–1991)
  • Visiting Lecturer, School of Biological Sciences, University of Sussex (1997–1999)
  • Editorial Boards: Biochemical Systematics and Ecology, Phytochemistry Letters
  • Editorial Advisory Panel: Biochemical Journal
Role: 

Structure, function and diversity of natural products and macromolecules from plants and fungi; specialist in NMR spectroscopy.

Phytochemical research covers the diversity and uses of natural products, as well as their isolation and characterisation, with an emphasis on the application of new analytical methodologies. The main technique employed is NMR spectroscopy, which is used for the structure elucidation of natural products of economic (e.g. medicinal, pesticidal etc.) or systematic value isolated by staff, visitors, and collaborators, across a wide range of programmes. Other projects have focused on the structural basis of biological activity, and the characterisation of substrate binding sites in plant and fungal enzymes. Responsible for 400 MHz NMR spectrometer at Kew (installed July 2000) and external member of the Medical Research Council Biomedical NMR Centre, National Institute for Medical Research, Mill Hill, London (1992–). Specialised areas of interest include the phytochemistry of the Leguminosae, and the utilisation of chemical characters, notably flavonoids, in multidisciplinary legume research. There is also an emphasis on using chemical profiling techniques that require only small fragments of material sourced from living or preserved collections. Phytochemistry contributor for the series, Genera Orchidacearum (1997–). Long standing interest in flavonoids and isoflavonoids, with published work that includes two series of reviews commissioned by the Royal Society of Chemistry for Natural Product Reports. Recipient of the Jack L. Beal Award from the American Society of Pharmacognosy and Journal of Natural Products.

Selected publications: 

Prescott, T.A.K., Panaretou, B., Veitch, N.C., Simmonds, M.S.J. (2014). A yeast chemical genetics approach identifies the compound 3,4,5-trimethoxybenzyl isothiocyanate as a calcineurin inhibitor. FEBS Letters 588, 455–458. Avaiable online

Prescott, T.A.K., Kite, G.C., Porter, E.A., Veitch, N.C. (2013). Highly glycosylated flavonols with an O-linked pentasaccharide from Iberis saxatilis (Brassicaceae). Phytochemistry 88, 85–91. Available online

Veitch, N.C. (2013). Isoflavonoids of the Leguminosae. Natural Product Reports 30: 988–1027. Available online

Fang, R., Veitch, N.C., Kite, G.C., Porter, E.A., Simmonds, M.S.J. (2013). Enhanced profiling of flavonol glycosides in the fruits of Sea Buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides), Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 61: 3868–3875. Available online

Stevenson, P.C., Kite, G.C., Lewis, G.P., Forest, F., Nyirenda, S.P., Belmain, S.R., Sileshi, G.W. & Veitch, N.C. (2012). Distinct chemotypes of Tephrosia vogelii and implications for their use in pest control and soil enrichment. Phytochemistry 78: 135–146. Available online