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Team Members

Kawamura Group 2021 Highlights

2021 has continued to be challenging for all of us, however the group has continued to progress and we have much to celebrate. The much anticipated Kawamura group Winter Symposium took place at last on 16th Feb 2022.  We reflected on two years since the group celebrated official handover of the Chemical biology labs (Feb 2020).  In this time we have more than doubled the footprint of the group, forged ahead with equipment purchases and set-up the synthesis/cold room space.  Thanks to all the hard work of the group! At the symposium we had a fantastic overview from the team showcasing all the diverse and exciting research happening across the… Read More »Kawamura Group 2021 Highlights

Welcome to our Mchem Students!

A warm welcome to our new Mchem Students, Oliver Crosby, Valeria Cobiltean and Hannah Hamilton who joined the group in January 2022. We hope to give them a rich experience learning from the diverse and fascinating science happening in the group and getting involved in our outreach activities.

We are recruiting!

We are recruiting! If you are interested in joining a vibrant, friendly and inclusive chemical biology team and work in a brand new chemical biology lab in the heart of Newcastle city centre, please apply here. We are looking to appoint two highly motivated and ambitious Research Assistants/Associates in Chemical Biology. We would like you to be suitably qualified with knowledge of: –    Organic Chemistry / Chemical biology –    Cell biology This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to the Cancer Research UK programme funded work on histone demethylases (KDMs), a class of enzymes involved in epigenetic signalling. Dysregulation of some KDMs is strongly linked to cancer and some are… Read More »We are recruiting!

Tom starts his Royal Society University Research Fellowship

Earlier this month, Tom McAllister left his role as senior research associate in the group to start his prestigious five-year Royal Society University Research Fellowship. He will develop new ways to understand how proteins and carbohydrates interact. Projects include determining how human glycosylating enzymes implicated in cancer recognise their protein targets, furthering our fundamental understanding and paving the way for new diagnostics or treatments. Another is developing a novel alternative mode of treatment for the wheat pathogen, Z. tritici the causative agent of septoria leaf blotch disease. Z. tritici causes losses of ~20% crop yield and current fungicidal treatment costs €1B/year in Europe alone – this research will allow the… Read More »Tom starts his Royal Society University Research Fellowship

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. Benoit was an EPSRC Synthesis for Biology and Medicine CDT student, Oxford and was co-supervised by co-supervised by Prof Shoumo Bhattacharya (Radcliffe Department of Medicine, Oxford).  He was awarded an EPSRC Doctoral Prize and continued as a postdoc in the lab for six months. As well as his sterling work 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… Read More »Congratulations Benoit!

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!

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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.)