I am a junior group leader in the department of Cell & Developmental Biology (Zell- und Entwicklungsbiologie) at the University of Würzburg, Germany. My research interests centre around the cytoskeleton, motor proteins, and membrane trafficking. My model organism of choice – both for studying those processes and exploring its biology in general – is the African trypanosome, Trypanosoma brucei. T. brucei is the causative agent of African trypanosomiasis, colloquially known as sleeping sickness (in people) and nagana (in cattle).
I studied biochemistry at the University of Cambridge, UK (1998-2002), with lab experience gained at the Department of Biochemistry and the Cambridge Institute for Medical Research. I did my PhD at the Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK (2002-2006); my postdoctoral period (2007-2014) in the laboratory of Graham Warren was spent at both Yale University, USA (2007) and the Max F. Perutz Laboratories in Vienna, Austria (2008-2014). In 2015 I moved to Würzburg to start my own group.
As such, I have experience of both university departments and research institutes, I have worked on both sides of the Atlantic, in both English-speaking and German-speaking countries, I have been involved in a lab relocation, seen a department go into meltdown, and met some of the smartest, most enthusiastic, and most inspiring personalities a body could hope to encounter. All those experiences I propose to channel into this blog – and hopefully start a conversation as to how the world of science operates on the inside.
Besides science, I am very interested in the arts – especially theatre. While in Vienna I founded the Vienna Biocenter Amateur Dramatic Club (VBC ADC), and throughout my undergraduate and postgraduate studies I was involved in the university drama scene. I’m also a confirmed film fan, and used to write a blog containing mostly reviews – this is in indefinite hiatus at present. I am passionately committed to science communication, and have participated in Science Slams and other public events.