I obtained my BSc (Hons) in Medical Biochemistry from the University of Glasgow and an MSc in Forensic Anthropology from the University of Edinburgh. My PhD at Heriot Watt University/Moredun Research Institute was to develop a rapid, low cost assay suitable for screening the anti-mycobacterial properties of nanoparticles (NPs) against mycobacteria. This was an in vitro assay using a Green Fluorescent Protein reporter strain of Mycobacteruim avium subspecies paratuberculosis (Map), a pathogenic mycobacterial species causing paratuberculosis in ruminants. This organism can be considered a model for Mtb, the bacterium responsible for tuberculosis (TB). Solid drug NPs (SDNs) of the first line TB antibiotics (rifampicin, isoniazid and pyrazinamide) were screened in the developed assay and compared to conventional antibiotics. Additionally, the efficacy of the SDNs was monitored intracellularly (within a Map infected macrophage) and imaged to determine whether these particles co-localised with the mycobacteria.
Higher Education Academy Accredited: Associate Fellow (Jan 2014).
Immune cells, macrophages, uptake the bacilli but are unable to destroy the disease causing pathogen through phagocytosis, reasons for which are not well elucidated. At LSTM I work in the parasitology team, investigating drug action on Mtb within the intracellular environment using High Content Imaging.
• University of Edinburgh- April 2014 Edinburgh Infectious Diseases "Imaging Infection".
• Heriot-Watt University- Jan 2014. 3 short courses: Learning Enhancement and Development Skills.
• University of Edinburgh- May 2013 6 week course. CMVM light microscopy course: Beyond Pretty Pictures.
• University of Edinburgh- Feb 2013 Short Course: Statistical/Experimental Design course.
• University of Edinburgh- Mar 2011 Short Course: Cross-sectional and Surface Histology Workshop: An Application of Anthropological Methods.