no, not really. At school I was mostly interested in animal behaviour and got hooked on evolution at uni. And to understand evolution at the fundamental level you have to look DNA and genes. And many genes are building instructions for proteins, so that’s why.
At school my favorite subject was Chemistry. I studied this at university and in my final year there I got interested in how proteins interact with chemicals. With this I learned about DNA and proteins and then moved afterwards to doing more work with proteins.
If I think about it, probably not. My degree was in Human Genetics and we barely did anything about proteins. One of our modules was in cancer in my final year where we covered quite a lot of different proteins and, I guess, that was what got me into doing what I am now.
I don’t think I really knew what proteins were until GCSE level. I think it was A-level when I learnt about the structures of amino acids and that there were essentially only 20 of them that gave rise to most of the complexity in living things that got me really interested in proteins.