Team:NRP-UEA-Norwich/Team

NRP-UEA-NORWICH iGEM

About Us

Hello!

We are a group of undergraduate students from the University of East Anglia, which is renowned for its environmental awareness and climate change research. We are studying subjects that range from Biological Sciences, Biochemistry, Biomedicine, Computing Sciences, Molecular Biology and Natural Sciences. Having been selected for this year’s iGEM team, we are identifying ways to bring synthetic biology techniques to an interdisciplinary research project that is currently ongoing within our university.

Supervisors

  • James Huffington
    Scientist
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  • James Huffington
    Scientist
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  • James Huffington
    Scientist
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Students

  • David Bryant
    BSc Biology
    David is a Biological Sciences student at UEA. As well as being a science fanboy he has outside interests in mental health and philosophy. Working within the rapidly developing field of molecular biology has left him undecided on what he’d specifically like to focus on, yet determined that he’ll find a worthwhile path to follow through further study.
  • Jessica Meades
    BSc Biochemistry
    Jessica is a student at UEA studying Biochemistry. Since she started, she has always expressed an interest in both aspects of chemistry and biology. In particular, she has taken an interest in medical research, specifically cancer research. When Jessica is not in the lab, she enjoys painting, playing korfball and reading.
  • Justinas Druskis
    BEng Computer Systems Engineering
    Justinas has been the go to guy when it came to technology. He is currently studying Computer Systems Engineering in the hopes of easing the struggles of day-to-day life. Justinas enjoys building new things, which is why programming is his outlet. Due to the fast-paced development in technology, Justinas is still unsure of his true interest. One of Justinas’ aspirations is to create an automated house which attunes itself to the tenants needs based upon their behaviour.
  • Katie Stevens
    MSc Natural Sciences
    Katie is doing a MSc in Natural Sciences because she couldn’t narrow down her choices in the field of science. Natural sciences has given her flexibility to choose from all the nearly science modules at UEA making it the perfect compromise. Katie’s friends consider her a music snob, but she likes to contradict that statement as she just has amazing taste in music.
  • Nancy Teng
    BSc Biomedical Science
    Nancy is currently studying Biomedical Sciences at UEA. Originally, her plan was to study medicine but realised she is more interested in the why as opposed to what. The immune system is a particular interest and what Nancy hopes to focus on in the future. Outside of the lab she enjoys a game of volleyball and snapping some photos while out and about travelling.
  • Peter Frazer
    MSc Chemistry
    Peter is a student at the University of Leicester, however he lives in Norwich and kindly volunteered his summer to come help the NRP-UEA team. Peter studies chemistry, and expresses a particular interest in synthetic chemistry which includes organic and inorganic chemistry. When not in a lab coat, Peter enjoys playing volleyball and various other games.
  • Prarthna Barot
    BSc Biological Sciences
    Prarthna is currently taking Biological Sciences at UEA. Her interests range from biotechnology, genetics and science communication making this course and iGEM the perfect compromise to satisfy her never-ending curiosity. Outside the world of science she enjoys fundraising, watching movies, playing the piano, painting and travelling.
  • Sam Prudence
    BSc Molecular Biology & Genetics
    Sam currently studies Molecular Biology and Genetics at UEA. His interest in molecular biology stems from the fact that it is one of the newest frontiers for modern biology, with vast amounts left to discover. Synthetic biology is a particular interest for him alongside evolutionary medicine, science communication and astrobiology to name a few. After graduating from UEA Sam intends to get his PhD. Additionally, he would do absolutely anything to get sent into space.
  • Tom Stirrop
    BSc Biological Sciences
    Tom is currently studying Biological Sciences at UEA. He has taken a particular interest in microbiology, genetics and science communication. His motive behind studying biology was to keep his interest broad, and in doing so keeping his options open in terms of a future career. A fun fact about Tom, someone once mistook him as Ed Sheeran on the train. Unfortunately, that is not one of his future aspirations. Instead, he hopes to go into the business side of the science industry.

PhD Advisors

  • Sam Rowe
    Chemistry Advisor
    Sam is a third year PhD student in the Chemistry department at UEA. His project focuses on developing new ways to transform solar energy into hydrogen and other valuable chemicals using Shewanella oneidensis MR-1. Outside of labs, Sam enjoys reading, playing piano and travelling whenever he can find the time. You can find Sam on twitter @samfrowe
  • Jon Davis
    Electrochemistry Advisor
    Jon is a fourth year PhD student working on microbial electro-synthesis. He’s particularly interested in the production of simple metabolites like formate in Shewanlla oneidensis MR1. Jon is a qualified biochemist and focusses on proteins and enzyme kinetics. However, he does dabble a bit in molecular biology and electrochemistry when called upon. This leads to his project, which focuses on the potential sequestering of atmospheric carbon dioxide to provide a renewable energy source. When not in the lab, Jon enjoys learning various languages, reading and painting.

  • Mike Norman
    Protein Expression Advisor
    Mike is currently going into his fourth year of his PhD. It’s centered around the topic of extracellular electron transport through the MtrCAB complex in Shewanella oneidensis MR-1. Mike considers himself a “RAF” brat, as he was born in Hong Kong. He enjoys travelling in order complete his scratch map. In his spare time, Mike likes to go for runs. Mike and Amy run an Instagram account (@TeaTimeSci) which focuses on the ‘fun’ side of a research project. You can find Mike on LinkedIn: https://uk.linkedin.com/in/michaelnormanbiotech.
  • Amy Easey
    Cloning Advisor
    Amy is a third year PhD student, her focus is molecular biology with emphasis on synthetic biology and RNA ligases. Her interest in synthetic biology was sparked by her dissertation, which centered on Salmonella genes and carrying out DNA analysis of similar serovars. Amy is a registered biomedical scientist after completing her BSc at the University of Hertfordshire. Outside of labs, Amy enjoys going to festivals, on holidays and to the gym. Mike and Amy occasionally go on Pokémon hunts alongside managing their Instagram account @TeaTimeSci which aims to help with outreach and science communication.

Instructors

  • Dr Richard Bowater
    Primary Instructor
    Richard is a Reader in the School of Biological Sciences at The University of East Anglia with a particular interest in biochemistry and molecular biology. His research group has characterised DNA repair processes from a variety of organisms. This research feeds into understanding the molecular mechanisms that influence genome stability and has developed his interest in synthetic biology.
  • Dr Ben Miller
    Secondary Instructor
    Ben Miller is the Eastern ARC Fellow in Synthetic Biology at the University of East Anglia. Ben is a molecular biologist with an interest in calcium signalling pathways and synthetic biology in plants. His research is focussed on how plants use calcium as a second messenger to respond and adapt to the environment.
  • Dr Marcus Edwards
    Advisor
    Dr Marcus Edwards is a Senior Research Associate in the group of Professor David Richardson in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of East Anglia. His primary expertise is in protein biochemistry and structural biology. His work focusses upon determining the mechanisms of electron transfer which allow certain bacteria to respire utilizing extracellular electron acceptors.
  • Professor Julea Butt
    Advisor
    Julea is Professor of Biophysical Chemistry at UEA. She contributes to teaching in biochemistry and her research centres on the characterisation of redox active metalloproteins. These proteins allow bacteria to colonise anaerobic environments by permitting respiration on inorganic ions and nanoparticles as electron sources and sinks. They are studied with a view to understanding how their properties contribute to their cellular role and can be exploited for sustainable production of valuable chemicals including fuels.
  • Professor Laura Bowater
    Human Practices Advisor
    Laura is a Professor of Microbiology Education and Engagement in the Norwich Medical School at the University of East Anglia with a particular interest in antibiotic resistance, medical education as well as science communication. Her research group focuses on antibiotic resistance and how science communication can be used to raise awareness of this important issue among different stakeholders including the general public. Laura is Editor in Chief of Microbiology Today and is on the editorial board of FEMS microbiology letters.
  • Dr Taoyang Wu
    Instructor
    Taoyang is a lecturer in the School of Computing Sciences at The University of East Anglia with a particular interest in computational and mathematical biology. His research group has designed and developed a number of computational tools for evolutionary analysis and ecology studies. He is also delivering lectures for the module Algorithms in Bioinformatics for undergraduate students at UEA, and the module Systems Biology for postgraduate students across NRP.
  • Dr Thomas Clarke
    Instructor
    Dr. Tom Clarke is a protein biochemist, specialising in the different bacterial respiratory systems. Clarke joined the UEA in 2003 and, after a fellowship was promoted to Senior lecturer in 2013. Clarke’s research has primarily involved the molecular characterisation of bacterial metalloproteins, using a range of spectroscopic and biophysical techniques to identify protein-protein interactions and molecular details. His recent work focusses on mineral reducing bacteria and understanding how these organisms can reduce extracellular minerals.

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