Image of Phebie Watson

Phebie Watson

Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences

Faculty of Science

I am currently a Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Molecular Biology PhD candidate under the primary supervision of Dr Komang Ralebitso-Senior and co-supervision of Dr Sulaf Assi. My working research title is: 'The impact of clothing and remains removal on predictive soil microbial community structure and chemistry aiding in PMI estimation'.

My research interests in forensic ecogenomics are to exploit complex successional patterns of grave soil microbial communities in order to improve and extend the current forensic toolkit for post-mortem intervals. This will be achieved by investigating the influence of exogenous variables such as clothing materials on the predictive molecular clocks in clandestine graves.


2020, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, MSc (Distinction)
2019, University of Liverpool, United Kingdom, BSc(Hons) (Upper Second Class)

Academic appointments

Research Assistant - Future of University Teaching of Critical Inclusion and Disability Courses and Programmes, Liverpool John Moores University, 2023 - 2023
Teaching Support Officer (grade 6), Faculty of Science, Liverpool John Moores University, 2022 - 2024
Curriculum Enhancement internship (Biological & Environmental Sciences) - Writing Design, Liverpool John Moores University, 2022 - 2022


Watson P, Shum P, Assi S, Ralebitso Senior TK. 2024. Bacterial Detectives: Investigating fabric presence and type on grave soil necrobiome dynamics The Microbiology Society Annual Conference 2024 Author Url Public Url

Watson P, Assi S, Ralebitso-Senior TK. 2023. Evaluating Attenuated Total Reflectance Fourier Transform Infrared to Identify and Delineate Gravesoil Post-Exhumation of a Murine Carrion Forensic Investigation Conference: From Death to Discovery Public Url

Watson P, Assi S, Ralebitso Senior TK. 2022. Evaluating attenuated total reflectance infrared and near infrared spectroscopy for classifying M. musculus grave soil in the presence of clothing material Joint Pharmaceutical Analysis Group Symposium Author Url Public Url


Watson P, Assi S, Ralebitso Senior TK. 2024. Gravesoil derived postmortem interval using attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and the influence of carrion-associated fabric. American Chemical Society (ACS) DOI Publisher Url

Conference publication

Watson P, Assi S, Ralebitso Senior T. Utilising attenuated total reflectance Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy to locate, identify and differentiate murine grave soil RSC Interest Group – Molecular Spectroscopy Author Url Publisher Url

Watson P, Ralebitso Senior T, Assi S. Investigating the Impact of Carrion-Associated Clothing Material on Gravesoil 16S Community Composition and Arrangement Forensic Investigation Conference: From Death to Discovery

Ralebitso Senior TK, Olakanye A, Bisker C, Watson P. Microbial forensic ecology: Applying multivariate analyses for postmortem interval determination 3rd International Caparica Conference in Translational Forensics Publisher Url

Watson P, Assi S, Ralebitso-Senior TK. From Threads to Timelines: Investigating Textile Influence on Grave Soil PMI Estimation European Meeting of Forensic Archaeologists Publisher Url

Highlighted activities


Best Poster 2022, Joint Pharmaceutical Analysis Group. 2022

Professional activities


Best Professional Oral Communication, 11th European Meeting of Forensic Archeologists. 2023

Best Poster 2022, Joint Pharmaceutical Analysis Group. 2022

Membership of professional bodies:

AMI Membership: Full Member, Applied Microbiology International. 2023

Student Society Member, International Society for Microbial Ecology. 2023

Affiliate Member, Chartered Society of Forensic Scientists.

Postgraduate Student Member, Microbiology Society.

Teaching qualification:

Associate Fellowship of Higher Education Award. 2023

SEDA - Supporting Learning Award. 2023