Since November 2011
Postdoctoral research investigating the role of host defence peptide β-defensin genes in male fertility and lung inflammation in the in vivo setting using various transgenic mice models. A combined approach that includes cell and molecular biology, genetics, immunology, developmental biology and imaging (light, fluorescent, Electron Microscopy (EM)) techniques to characterise and elucidate the role of β-defensins. Within 2 years of working in the newly embarked field of research in male fertility and host defence peptides, I successfully published a first author paper in 2013. I am currently working on a lung inflammation project investigating the role of β-defensin (Defb14, mouse orthologue of human β-defensin 3, hBD3) in bacterial clearance and immune cells recruitment. Achievements: • Generated novel findings of the sperm tail defect using the newly acquired EM methodology. • Discovered a defect in intracellular calcium levels in the defensin cluster deletion mutant mice leading to a successful first author publication in Plos Genetics (2013 9 (10): e1003826). • Received a Contribution Reward for academic staff in July 2014 for excellent progress and achievement in a newly embarked field of research.
Postdoctoral Researcher Edinburgh, United Kingdom
November 2011 --- February 2015
Research Fellow, MRC Human Genetics Unit
Postdoctoral research investigating the role of host defence peptide β-defensin genes in male fertility and lung inflammation in the in vivo setting using various transgenic mice models. A combined approach that includes cell and molecular biology, genetics, immunology, developmental biology and imaging (light, fluorescent, Electron Microscopy (EM)) techniques to characterise and elucidate the role of β-defensins.
- In vivo work with murine models (Module 1-3, Surgery module 4)
- Collection and processing of blood and tissues for analysis
- Immunological assay: ELISA, cell cytospin, immunohistochemistry, immunofluorescence staining
- Cell sorting and quantification using FACS and flow cytometry
- Cell isolation (i.e. BMDM, bone marrow derived macrophages), mammalian cell line and mice primary cell culture
- Molecular techniques: qRT-PCR and PCR for gene expression quantification, DNA/RNA extraction, agarose gel electrophoresis
- Use of light, fluorescent and EM microscopy to analyse histological and structural defects
- Supervision and teaching of students
PhD Researcher, Internal Medicine (Renal)
March 2007 --- August 2011
I started my PhD part-time while I was working as research technician in the same lab after applying and securing a staff scholarship to support my studies. This transitioned to full-time after successfully obtaining a 3 years MRC scholarship. My PhD was in “Podocyte repair and recovery in kidney disease”. I used a targeted diphtheria toxin-induced podocyte injury to investigate the key role of podocyte damage in development of kidney fibrosis using transgenic murine model. Subsequent drug intervention studies were carried out to test therapeutic interventions following targeted podocyte injury. Achievements: • Applied and obtained a number of scholarships (staff and MRC funded) to successfully complete PhD studies (p/t 2007-2008, f/t 2008-2011). • Awarded two prestigious Renal Association Amgen bursaries to participate at National conferences to give oral presentation in Birmingham (2011) and Brighton (2007).
Research Laboratory Technician
January 2006 --- March 2008
Initially took a p/t technical position to acquire further lab and work experience after completing my MSc studies. From March 2007 I obtained a staff scholarship to start my p/t PhD, which transitioned to f/t after being successfully awarded an MRC scholarship in April 2008. Activities included: • Management of several transgenic colonies for various research groups, including genotyping and monitoring animal usage for Home Office auditing. • Support research projects by developing, constructing and optimizing techniques and conducting research experiments (PCR, immunohistochemistry, cell culture, drug studies). • Monitor progress and take regular recording of experimental results for interpretation and presentation. Maintain general laboratory stock and equipment. • Hold a Home Office Personal Animal License (since Nov 2006) Achievements: • Offered an open-ended research technician position at the University after working for 1 year. • Applied and successfully obtained a staff scholarship to undertake p/t PhD studies.
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Internal Medicine (Renal): Podocyte repair and recovery in kidney disease from The University of Edinburgh in 2011
Bachelor's Degree in Biomedical Sciences, General from Edinburgh Napier University in 2007
Master's Degree in Molecular Medical Micobiology from University of Nottingham in 2005
Bachelor's Degree in Biological Sciences (Microbiology & Infection) from The University of Edinburgh in 2004