I studied for my Integrated Masters in Medicinal Chemistry at the University Leeds where I undertook a placement year at the pharmaceutical company Roche in Basel, Switzerland. My work there primarily focused on attaching sugars to novel antibiotics with the aim to improve their solubility. Having worked in a heavily organic chemistry environment for the year, I opted for a more chemical biology based masters project and that’s where I found my niche. I was tasked with designing an assay to test multivalent inhibitors of Shiga-like toxins and it was an amalgamation of the new techniques I was learning in the bio lab and my interest in carbohydrates and AB5 toxins that led me to apply for my PhD project.
I am investigating how to develop new ways to use proteins to target drug molecules to specific parts of the cell to reduce toxicity from off-target activity.