Team Members

Welcome to the Team Justina!

A warm welcome to Justina Heslop who joins us to support the group with reporting, events, social media and engagement. Justina has worked as a Research Project Manager at Newcastle University since 2017, supporting several research groups and projects across Chemistry and Engineering most notable the North East Centre for Energy Materials.

Welcome to our new PhD Students

A warm welcome to our new PhD students who joined us on 1st October 2021. Emma Wadforth, Oliwia Rebacz, Tom Smith, and Tim Bell will be working across a number of exciting projects funded by BBSRC, EPSRC MoS Med CTD, ERC.

Congratulations Benoit!

Many congratulations to Dr Benoit Darlot on successfully defending his DPhil thesis on Design of modulatory peptides against chemokines. As well as his sterling work on on tick protein derived anti-inflammatory peptides, Benoit was an active member of the research community.  He was a member of the NU Rainbow Network steering committee and the committee for the NuTEC RSC local section where he  endeavoured to support his local community and encourage young chemist to get their voices heard. It was great having Benoit as part of the team and we wish him every success as he embarks on his journey to train as a patent lawyer in London.

Welcome to the Team Marie-Helene!

Welcome to our new research associate Marie-Helene Ruchaud who joins us from Newcastle University Medical School where she worked on a variety of projects involving innate immunology and inflammation. These included studying the human immune response in epithelial cells following Enteropathogenic E.Coli (EPEC) infection along with the regulation of the innate immune response in severe lung injury & infection or testing potential antimicrobial agents such as p97 inhibitors acting as DNaA inhibitors in Staphyloccocus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. She is currently developing quantitative cellular assays to investigate inhibition of SARS-Cov2 main protease by cyclic peptides. A warm welcome to the team!

Joanna’s viva and baby!

A double congratulations is owed to our own Dr Joanna Bonnici, who successfully navigated the perils of a pandemic-Zoom viva to defend her DPhil thesis in December. With hardly a breath to spare she started a family with her husband Tom, as baby Elsie arrived in late January this year. Joanna has been an asset to the lab throughout her DPhil and is almost certainly, definitely, looking forward to more happy years of research to come… Many congratulations to them all and we look forward to using both events as an excuse to over-celebrate later this year once we are all vaccinated!

Newcastle University Rainbow Network steering committee member

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Benoit Darlot is now an active member of the NU Rainbow Network steering committee. He is investing his time and efforts to defend LGBTQ+ rights on the campus and to foster institutional change within the university to tackle EDI issues. (Blog by B.D.)

Paper in Epigenetics

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Paper in Epigenetics: Hypoxia and hypoxia mimetics differentially modulate histone post-translational modifications – Collaborative work with Chris Schofield, Louise Walport, James McCullagh, Richard Hopkinson and Emily Flashman groups where we report the use of LCMS based intact histone assay to look at the global changes in histone PTMs in response to hypoxia / compound treatment – read the full paper here  

Gordon Research Conference on Chemistry and Biology of Peptides 2020

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Attendance at the Gordon Research Conference on Chemistry and Biology of Peptides 2020 in Ventura, CA, USA. (9-14/02/2020) Benoit Darlot presented his work on tick saliva protein inspired anti-inflammatory peptides to the peptide community in Ventura. Great opportunity to share the lab’s work and get inspiration from the growing peptide community. (Blog by B.D.)  

Race for Life 2019 – Oxford 5k

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Race for Life Oxford 5k (15/07/2019). Oxford Chemistry Research Laboratory Team raised £235 for Cancer Research UK! Big thanks to everyone who has supported us. Photo with Emily Flashman, Leah Taylor Kearney and budding chemists.