Congratulations Professor Lockyer!

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Dr Nick LockyerThe School of Chemistry at the University of Manchester have awarded Nick Lockyer a Chair in Physical Chemistry.

Nick came to the University (then UMIST) to read Chemistry in the late 1980s and continued to study for a PhD in Laser Ionisation Mass Spectrometry of Biomolecules, awarded in 1996. His postdoctoral research involved the development of the Biotof, an imaging ToF-SIMS instrument, with a focus on laser post-ionisation, sputtered neutral mass spectrometry (SNMS).

He was awarded a Leverhulme Special Research Fellowship to further develop the Biotof as a Chemical Microscope, following which he was appointed lecturer in Chemistry. Nick briefly moved to the School of Chemical Engineering and Analytical Science (CEAS), during the merger of UoM and UMIST in 2004, before moving back to Chemistry in 2011. With his research group in the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology (MIB), and also the Photon Science Institute (PSI), he has explored a range of imaging mass spectral modalities in the area of biology and biomaterials, together with technique and instrument development.

As the result of successful bids to EPSRC and the Royce Institute he was awarded a major grant to replace the Ionoptika J105 3D Chemical Imager with a new instrument. This will involve consolidating the research group in the PSI providing opportunities to further explore advanced materials and photonic approaches to mass spectrometry.

 

New Funding for Battery Characterisation

UKRI/The Faraday Institution have funded a project led by Dr Robert Weatherup (Diamond Manchester Research Fellow)
“What lies beneath? – new multimodal platforms for operando characterisation of buried interfaces in working batteries.”
The principal goal of this proposal is to develop new in-situ and operando platforms including ToF-SIMS, NAPXPS and HAXPES that will enable characterisation of buried interfaces in working batteries.

New funding for plant cell SIMS

A BBSRC Flexible Talent Mobility Award to Dr Jolanda van Munster (School of Chemistry & MIB) and Dr Sadia Sheraz (School of Materials) will allow us to extend our SIMS research into plant matter. The project entitled “Correlative mass-spectrometry imaging for nanoscale structural insight into plant biomass for food and biotechnology” is in collaboration with Dr Katie Moore (School of Materials), Prof Richard Ward (University of São Paulo-Ribeirão Preto, Brazil) and Rothamsted Research Ltd.

New project funded

New Developments in Quantitative 3D Chemical Imaging

A major new EPSRC grant of £844k will allow us to explore further the 3D imaging SIMS capabilities of reactive cluster projectile using a new high-energy ion beam.  Project partners include Prof Ian Gilmore at the National Physical Laboratory and Prof Arnaud Delcorte at the Universite catholique de Louvain.

New Collaboration in Biofuel Biotechnology

Funding from the Sao Paulo Research Foundation “FAPESP” and the University of Manchester for a new collaboration with Dr Jolanda van Munster, BBSRC research fellow in the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology (MIB) and Prof. Richard John Ward, group leader of the Protein Biochemistry and Biophysics Laboratory, University of São Paulo-Ribeirão Preto.
The aim is to bring together expertise in protein engineering and polysaccharide mass spectrometry to enhance understanding of cell wall architecture at the micrometer scale to guide enzymatic deconstruction of lignocellulose for enhanced biofuel production.

Dr Huriyyah Alturaifi

Congratulations to Huriyyah on the award of her PhD!  Her thesis is entitled ‘New Capabilities for Molecular Surface and in-depth Analysis with Cluster Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry’.  The project was co-supervised by Prof Mike Turner at the Organic Materials Innovation Centre.

Dr Szula!

Congratulations to Ewa on being awarded her PhD!

A just reward for all her hard work. Well done!

Dr Giles Edwards

Congratulations to Giles on the award of his PhD entitled ‘Advances in Bioanalytical Laser Ionisation Mass Spectrometry’.

Dr Afnan Alnajeebi

Congratulations to Afnan on the award of her PhD entitled ‘Comparison of cluster primary ion beams for quantitative biomolecular SIMS analysis’.

PhD – Lipidome and metabolome changes due to pharmacological stress

Characterising changes in the lipidome and metabolome of mammalian cells as a consequence of pharmacological induced stress

Advisory team: Dr Joanna Denbigh (80%), Professor Peter Gardner (10%)*, Dr Nick Lockyer (10%)*

Deadline: 31 March 2017

Characterising changes in the lipidome and metabolome of mammalian cells as a consequence of pharmacological induced stress affords new insight into biochemical processes associated with disease progression and the treatment thereof. Many diseases are linked with abnormal lipid metabolism. The chemical profiling of diseased and stressed biological systems through lipidomics and metabolomics is a powerful approach to understanding and ultimately controlling biological function.
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Visitor from University of Karachi

This month we welcome Dr. Syed Ghulam Musharraf, Associate Professor from H.E.J. Research Institute of Chemistry and International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS) at the University of Karachi, Pakistan (http://www.iccs.edu).  Musharraf will discuss collaborative opportunities between his institution and the University of Manchester and share his own research interests with our group and others in the MIB.  His visit is funded through a Charles Wallace Visiting Fellowship.

Welcome to John

We welcome John Medland to the group as a PDRA on the new multiplexed ToF-SIMS project.  John joins us from the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

MPhil for Andres

Congratulations to Andres on the award of his MPhil degree.  We look forward to welcoming him back to Manchester very soon to study for a PhD.  Hasta la vista, Andres!

PhD Studentship

New insights into disease pathogenesis and therapy through high resolution mass spectrometry imaging

Dr Nick Lockyer, Dr Katie Moore, Prof Kaye Williams

3.5 year MRC DTP PhD Studentship (UK/EU)

Application Deadline: 18 November 2016

Various imaging modalities provide essential tools in modern biological and medical research. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) for example employs fluorophore- or enzyme-tagged antibodies to report the distribution of disease-associated proteins in pathological tissues. In this project we will explore the application of mass spectrometry imaging technology to provide a more quantitative and comprehensive distribution of diagnostic ions related to cancer biomarkers and drug therapy. This is important because of the heterogeneity of solid tumours containing a variety of cells involved in biological cross-talk and responding differently to drug intervention.

The approach will be based on the highly sensitive detection of established and novel anticancer metallo-drugs e.g. cisplatin and metal/nanoparticle-tagged antibodies binding to specific protein biomarkers. Samples will range from in-vitro cellular targets, to multi-cellular 3D tumour models and tissue microarrays. We will assess the performance characteristics of the latest secondary ion mass spectrometry imaging platforms in a series of calibration studies and perform benchmarking against the current state-of-the-art IHC approaches. This technology has the potential to precisely localise, on a sub-cellular scale, multiple biomarkers and metallo-drugs in a single-step measurement. The overall aim of the project is to develop and validate methodology demonstrating the power of secondary ion mass spectrometry imaging as a novel tool for diagnosis, intervention and the development of novel therapeutics for cancer and other diseases.

This is a highly interdisciplinary project providing excellent training opportunities in the application of advanced analytical technologies at the life sciences/medical interface. In addition the student will acquire niche research and core bioscience skills.

For more details contact Dr N Lockyer (nick.lockyer@manchester.ac.uk)

Funding Notes

This project is to be funded under the MRC Doctoral Training Partnership. Full details on how to apply can be found on our website https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/study/research/funded-programmes/mrc-dtp/
Applications are invited from UK/EU nationals only. Applicants must have obtained, or be about to obtain, at least an upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject.

References

  • Angelo, M. et al. Multiplexed ion beam imaging of human breast tumours. Nature Medicine 20, 436 (2014).
  • Wedlock L.E. et al. NanoSIMS multi-element imaging reveals internalisation and nucleolar targeting for a highly-charged polynuclear platinum compound. Chem. Commun. 49, 6944 (2013).
  • Steinhauser, M.L. et al. Multi-isotope imaging mass spectrometry quantifies stem cell division and metabolism. Nature 481, 516 (2012).

New project funded

August sees the start of a new EPSRC-funded project entitled ‘Development of Multiplexed ToF-SIMS Instrumentation‘ which represents a completely new paradigm for ToF-SIMS and builds of the group’s reputation for innovation in instrument development.  The 3-year, £0.5M project involves collaborators in the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering and Ionoptika Ltd.