Looking forward to another webchat this afternoon
EducationCarisbrooke high school 2003-2006, Cowes high school 2006-2008, University of Kent 2008-2011, University of Sussex 2011-2012, University of Glasgow 2012-2013, University of Edinburgh 2013-2016
QualificationsBSc Biochemistry, MSc Microscopy, MRes Proteomics
Work HistoryShoe shops, Build-a-bear
Current JobPhD Student in Cancer Research
University of Edinburgh
Favourite thing to do in my job: I really enjoy looking down a microscope at my cells and seeing all the colours that I have stained the different proteins!
My Work: Reptin, what does it do? Why is it in the cell? Why is there lots in cancer cells? – it’s my job to find out!
I work on a protein called Reptin. I want to know what it does, what other proteins it works with in the cell.
We already know that lots of types of cancer have higher levels of Reptin than normal healthy cells. I want to try and work out why this is.
If I can work out Reptin’s job in the cell then we might be able to change what it is doing in cancer cells to turn them back into normal cells.
I make Reptin and other proteins to see if I can see them binding
I stain Reptin with brightly coloured fluorescent molecules to see where it is in the cell
I stain other proteins in the cell to see if I can them working with Reptin
I try and stop Reptin being in cells and I change what it does in the cell to see the changes it causes
My Typical Day: Playing with cells, making proteins, looking down microscopes and drinking lots of tea!
9.00am Get into the lab and put the liquid called media that my cells grow in to heat in a waterbath
9.30am Make a list of the thing I want to get done and go and collect what I need
10.00am Start my experiments
10.30am Cup of tea :):):)
11.00am Continue my experiments
12.00pm Talk to my boss to see what he thinks about what I’m doing
12.30pm Go and check on my cells to see if they need to be changed into a new flask (what they grow in) or if they just need new media
1.00pm Have lunch myself and another cup of tea :):):)
1.30pm Keep on with my experiments
2.00pm See what my other lab mates are up to
2.30pm More experiments, maybe a trip to the microscope
4.00pm Hopefully get good results that I can take to my boss
5.00pm Home for dinner
What I'd do with the prize money: Science experiments in a box!
Where I work we are trying to go in to schools and clubs to do experiments with the people there that are like the ones that we do in the lab.
When we go we want to take a box with us that has everything we need to do the experiment. Every experiment has a separate box!
With the money I would want to try and make more boxes so we can do more experiments outside of the lab with people like you!!!
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Crazy, nerdy and loud
What or who inspired you to follow your career?
I’ve always enjoyed science and once I had finished my A levels it was the only thing I wanted to do.
Were you ever in trouble at school?
I used to get in trouble for being loud and disruptive
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
A teacher or a singer
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
Steak and chips
What is the most fun thing you've done?
In a few weeks I am going to be doing Irish Dancing at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow – I think this will be the most fun thing I have ever done!!!
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
Nobel prize, my own research lab and an amazing house
Tell us a joke.
Why did the germ cross the microscope? To get to the other slide