St.Peters School, Bournemouth, Dorset
3 B’s at A Level (Biology, Chemistry and Maths)
Master Degree in Biochemistry (University of Bath)
PhD in Neuroscience, Psychology & Pharmacology (University of Bath)
Waiter in local pub/restaurant, check-out and kiosk assistant at Somerfield’s
Research associate (also known as a post-doc)
I am a Lecturer in Neuroscience based at Keele University (near Stoke) and also have a research position at Cardiff University (Wales).
I use mice and humans to understand how genes and proteins in the brain work, especially for important processes involved in learning and memory. I am also interested in how these brain processes go wrong in people with mental health disorders such as schizophrenia and autism.
My Typical Day:
I normally analyse data on the computer, perform experiments in the lab including rodent work, and give lectures to uni students.
A mixture of data analysis on the computer and checking emails, an experiment that is either looking at animal behaviour or studying the levels of genes and proteins in the brains of animals. Other things include giving seminars or lectures in neuroscience to students and talking about my research data to my department or at conferences where I talk about my work to other scientists.
What I'd do with the prize money:
Set up an interactive workshop where young people can find out how their brain ticks in relation to learning events, how it turns into memory and explain what might go wrong in people with mental disorders…
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
open-minded, thinker, comedian
What did you want to be after you left school?
Film director, novelist
Were you ever in trouble at school?
Yes! I ended up on the naughty line a few times!
Who is your favourite singer or band?
Muse, Led zepplin, Pink Floyd, ABBA
What's your favourite food?
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
Fame/nobel prize, set up my own science building for brain research, go into space
Tell us a joke.
Why didnt the brain want to have a bath? It didnt want to be brain-washed!