Laboratory Team

Dr Mark Whittaker (Managing Director)

Mark is the Managing Director and co-owner of APIS. He is an entomologist with a research background in crop pest biology, and has 20 years’ experience in the biopesticide industry. With a reputation for his pragmatic approach to regulatory problem solving he has particular expertise in the design and adaptation of ecotoxicology studies for microbial pesticides. He has assembled a team of uniquely talented people who make APIS one of the world’s most innovative contract research labs, and the leading regulatory consultancy for biopesticides.

Vicki Whittaker (Facility Manager)

Vicki is the Facility Manager, Director and co-owner of APIS. She has an academic background in environmental science and a post-graduate career that included financial services and intelligence coordination for the police. She is the managerial hub of APIS, with responsibility for all GLP compliance, personnel and finance matters.

Dr Catherine Morris (Regulatory Project Manager)

With an academic background in microbiology and a PhD from the University of London, Catherine joined APIS in 2016 with several years’ experience as a Study Monitoring Lead and Regulatory Scientist. She is responsible for liaising between clients, third party labs and regulatory authorities to ensure the smooth running of all our studies and regulatory projects. Catherine is also responsible for study scheduling.

Diane Raper (Quality Assurance Manager)

Having spent her whole career in GLP laboratories Diane joined APIS in 2021, bringing 20 years QA experience from leading contract research organisations. She is responsible for ensuring the GLP compliance of everything we do, from study planning and conduct through to reporting and archiving.

Maria Lewington-Gower (Trainee QA Officer)

Maria joined our QA unit in 2022. Previously a Study Director responsible for non-target plant studies at a leading contract research organisation, she has a strong background in quality management systems gained from both horticultural research and food manufacturing operations. Her extensive experience strengthens the existing QA expertise at APIS.

Will Askew (Study Director)

Will is a Study Director with an academic background in molecular biology, entomology, plant science and biotechnology. With expertise across the full range of our lab studies he leads our qPCR-based diagnostics team. He is currently working toward an APIS-funded PhD at Newcastle University on the biosafety of novel biopesticides.

Kris Jones (Study Director)

Kris is a biologist specialising in plant sciences and agriculture. He has a background in contract research, and brings particular expertise in HPLC, UPLC and ELISA to our analytical team.

Lucie Poole (Study Director)

Lucie is a biologist with a BSc in Zoology. She specialises in aquatic ecotoxicology, and brings several years’ experience from contract research to our aquatic team.

Elliott Feakes (Study Scientist and Apiary Manager)

Elliott has an academic background in conservation, and a passion for wildlife that has seen him looking after lions, cheetahs and crocodiles at a conservation ranch in South Africa. He provides invaluable laboratory support to our team of Study Directors across all disciplines, and is responsible for the maintenance of our three apiary sites.

Jayna Bains (Study Scientist)

Jayna joined APIS in 2022. She has an MSc in biochemistry and previously worked as a biopharmaceutical characterisation scientist for a leading biotechnology company. Her expertise in HPLC and qPCR allow her to operate across our chemical and microbial analytical teams.

Hannah Watson – Laboratory Assistant

Hannah joined APIS in 2022, bringing six years’ experience in GLP contract research from a leading CRO. As a critical part of our lab team she ensures the smooth-running of all our studies by managing media preparation, reagent stocks and equipment calibration.