Megan Bryden

Megan was born and raised in County Durham, attending the University of Durham for her MChem. During her final year however, Megan took the opportunity to complete her Masters at the Université Grenoble Alpes, where her project was focused on luminescent redox probes based on lanthanide complexes. Upon completion of this, Megan was accepted onto the CRITICAT CDT PhD scheme at St Andrews. Her project, supervised by Dr Eli Zysman-Colman, centres on photocatalysis. In her spare time, Megan enjoys baking and eating cake, alongside attending fitness classes to balance out the excessive cake.

Rebecca Craik

Rebecca grew up in south of France and graduated with a MChem from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Montpellier (ENSCM) in France. Throughout her course she had the opportunity to do various placements including two in medicinal chemistry: one in Sanofi for 4 months in France and one in GlaxoSmithline for a year in the UK. Her final year project was an internship in Arran Chemical in Ireland where she had to find and optimize a scalable route to obtain a commercially useful enone. She will undertake her CRITICAT PhD under the supervision of Dr Andrew Smith, studying catalytic enantioselective 1,2 rearrangments using lewis base catalysis in order to synthesize enantiomerically pure a-aminoacid. Besides chemistry Rebecca enjoys running, cooking, watching all kinds of series and is a huge Harry Potter nerd.

Jonny Dennis

Jonathan grew up in Edinburgh, attending Heriot-Watt University where he completed a BSc in Chemistry with Pharmaceutical Chemistry, working on the synthesis of Botulinum B and Tetanus toxin light chains for use in super resolution microscopy in the Rickman Lab of the Institute of Biological Chemistry, Biophysics and Bioengineering (IB3). He then attended the University of Edinburgh, where he did an MSc in Synthetic Biology & Biotechnology and developed, as part of his dissertation, a toolkit for the high-throughout, in vivo directed evolution of enzymes on the Taxol biosynthetic pathway in the Rios Lab of the Institute of Bioengineering (IBioE). Whilst completing his MSc, he received the MacQuarrie Fellowship, allowing him to work as Scientist-in-Residence at George Watson’s College, in particular arranging and hosting lab placements for school pupils. Right after this, he began his PhD in Edinburgh’s Institute of Quantitative Biology, Biochemistry and Biotechnology (IQB3), under the supervision of Dr Stephen Wallace and Prof Dominic Campopiano. For his PhD project, he will be working on metabolic engineering approaches to the diastereoselective synthesis of a class of natural products with pharmaceutical applications.

Caroline Elliott

Carrie grew up near Bristol and completed her MSci at Imperial College London, graduating in 2018. For her Masters project, under the supervision of Prof Paul Lickiss, Carrie synthesised novel silicon containing linkers for MOF synthesis. For her CRITICAT project she will be investigating stable MOFs for the catalytic destruction of toxic gases with Prof Russell Morris. In her spare time Carrie enjoys reading and gaming, as well as keeping active by playing squash and going to the gym.

Matthew Garvin

Matthew graduated from Heriot-Watt University with an MChem in 2018. For his Masters research project he focused on the development of amine bis-phenolate zirconium catalysts for the polymerisation of lactide. His CRITICAT PhD is in chemical engineering and is supervised by Dr Susana Garcia and Dr Ruariadh McIntosh. He will be exploring the application of MOFs for the photocatalytic conversion of CO2. Outside of chemistry he enjoys reading, driving and playing games.

Nikoletta Gkoulemani

Nikoletta is from Greece and studied Chemistry in the University of Patras. She finished her master’s in Catalysis, Antipollution and Green Energy Production in the same institution. For her master’s thesis she studied the catalytic properties of nickel catalysts supported on the binary oxide of lanthana-alumina doped with palladium and the behavior of this catalytic system in the dry reforming of methane process. Nikoletta will pursue her PhD at St Andrews University with Prof John Irvine on the development of catalysts for the selective photocatalytic conversion of cellulose into oligosaccharides. In her spare time she enjoys watching movies, reading and baking.

Catriona Haberland

Catriona graduated with a BSc degree in Biomolecular Science from the University of St Andrews in 2018. She did her honours project under the supervision of Dr Tracey Gloster investigating the structural basis of enzyme function and substrate specificity of Shewanella woodyi carbohydrate kinases. Her PhD, under joint supervision of Dr Tracey Gloster and Dr Gordon Florence (St Andrews), will involve protein engineering of sulfatases for biomedical applications. In her free time, she enjoys playing sports and spending time with friends and family.

Maciej Kucharski

Maciej was born in Wroclaw, Poland, where he spent 19 beautiful years before moving to (equally beautiful) Scotland. He studied chemistry at The University of Edinburgh and graduated with a Master’s in 2018. As part of his degree, he completed an industrial placement at GSK, working on the capability of gas-liquid flow platforms for development of hydrogenation reactions. His Master’s thesis was on development of a novel approach to enantioconvergent synthesis. For his PhD, he joined The Lloyd-Jones and Watson Groups to study the kinetics and mechanism of anion metathesis in the Suzuki-Miyaura reaction. Maciej enjoys swing dancing, swimming, sightseeing and a good night out.

Mariano Marco

Mariano grew up in Zaragoza (Spain), he graduated in 2018 with a chemistry degree from the university of Zaragoza. For his final year he went to Heriot-Watt university as part of the ERASMUS+ program, where Dr Humphrey Yiu supervised his final year project. For his final year project, he synthesised magnetic molecular imprinted polymers (MMIPs) to remove antibiotics from water sources. His CRITICAT PhD will be carried out under the supervision of Dr Humphrey Yiu and Prof. Martin McCoustra, and will be focused on the development of heterogeneous catalytic methods for non-oxidative coupling of methane in plasma catalysis. Mariano enjoys hiking, snowboarding, martial arts, reading, listening to music, magic, fantasy and scifi (specially Star Wars), videogames and watching movies.

Samuel Molyneux

Sam grew up in the Wirral in the North West of England and received his BA and MSci from the University of Cambridge in June 2018. For his master’s project he worked with Dr Andrew Wheatley investigating the reactions of alkylaluminium compounds with industrial lubricants. Sam will carry out his PhD under the supervision of Professor Rebecca Goss, joining her group to work on her concept of GenoChemetics, hyphenating synthetic biology and synthetic chemistry using biocatalysis and cross-coupling reactions. Other than Chemistry, Sam enjoys reading, Netlfix, and Pokémon.

Conor Oates

Conor is from the North East of Scotland and graduated from Heriot-Watt University with an MChem degree in Chemistry with Pharmaceutical chemistry being awarded the Isobel Inglis prize for pharmaceutical chemistry. In his final year he conducted a masters research project under the supervision of Dr Ai-Lan Lee working on a non-catalysed Minisci reaction for the alkylation of 1,4-quinones. He will undertake his CRITICAT PhD under the supervision of Prof. Matt Clarke at St Andrews and Dr Steve Thomas at Edinburgh University researching manganese catalysis. Outside of chemistry he is a swimmer and likes to read.

Ellie Reid

Ellie is originally from Surrey and graduated with an MChem from the University of Southampton in 2017. Her Masters project focused on the preparation of Fe(III) and Co(III) metallosupramolecular grid assemblies under the supervision of Dr Jonathan Kitchen. After her studies she spent a year working as an analytical scientist for a pharmaceutical company in Surrey before deciding to carry on with her studies. Her CRITICAT PhD will be under the supervision of Euan Kay and Paul Lusby looking towards merging nanoparticle and capsule single electron transfer catalysis. In her spare time Ellie enjoys running, cycling and swimming.

Antoine Schuller

Antoine graduated from the École Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Lille (France) in 2018. For his master’s last year, he performed an Erasmus exchange at the University of St Andrews where he specialised himself in synthetic chemistry. His Honours Project was about the synthesis of a substituted dioxolanone isolated from a Chinese marine fungus. Antoine joined the CRITICAT CDT Program in September 2018 and after the 6-month training, he will be able to join the Bode’s group and the Watson’s group for a joint project involving Copper catalysis and EPR spectroscopy. Outside academic works, Antoine does recreational sports (mainly climbing and badminton) and spends time hanging out with friends or reading.

Dominic Taylor

Dominic completed his MChem in chemistry with materials at Heriot-Watt University in 2018. For his final year project he focused on the development of polymer supported photoredox catalysis under the supervision of Dr. Filipe Vilela. For his CRITICAT PhD project he will focus on developing supramolecular photocatalysts under the supervision of Dr. Vilela and Dr. Scott Dalgarno. Dominic’s personal interests include cooking and coding/website development.

Chris Thomson

Chris was born in Paisley, Scotland, but grew up near Grassington in the Yorkshire Dales, England. After A-levels and working part time as a Commis Chef, he returned to Scotland and obtained his MChem Chemistry with Biochemistry degree, as well as the William H Perkin Prize for organic chemistry, from Heriot-Watt University. He spent his final year developing heterogeneous organic photoredox catalysts for organic synthesis under the supervision of Dr Filipe Vilela. His PhD will see him return to the VilelaLAB under the joint supervision of Dr Ai-Lan Lee and Dr Vilela, to continue developing photoactive materials for organic synthesis. Besides the PhD, Chris enjoys playing guitar, cooking, travelling and going to gigs.

Andrew Tiberia

Andy was raised in Cambridgeshire and completed his undergraduate studies at the University of York in 2018 (MChem), spending his final year at Syngenta developing a novel herbicidal compound. Now part of the CRITICAT CDT, his PhD under the supervision of Dr. Andrew Lawrence at the University of Edinburgh (jointly supervised with Prof. Lloyd-Jones) will involve the development of a new approach to enantioconvergent catalysis.

Elizabeth Trodden

Beth graduated from Heriot-Watt University, MChem with an Industrial Experience year. She spent her placement year at Pfizer where she worked as an analytical scientist to GMP standards. Her masters project utilised a photo-catalyst to initiate atom-transfer radical polymerisations. For her PhD project she will develop a homogeneous catalyst to capture CO2 for efficient carbon utilisation under the supervision of Dr. Stephen Mansell and Dr. Eva Sanchez-Fernandez. In her free time, she enjoys keeping active and meeting up with friends.

Virginie Viseur

Virginie graduated from the National Graduate School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering of Lille (ENSCL) in France, with a year abroad at the University of St Andrews. She had the opportunity to do several placements in university lab, such as in Euan Kay’s group in St Andrews (nanoparticles and hydrazone exchange reactions) and in companies such as Minakem (pharmaceutical chemistry), SARP Industries (chemical waste treatment) and Roquette (natural-based ingredients for food, nutrition and health). At St Andrews, her final year project was carried out under the supervision of Pr Matt Clarke and focused on a catalytic sequential conjugate addition and reductive amination in order to make α-chiral tertiary amines. As part of the CRITICAT, Virginie will be working under the joint supervision of Pr Douglas Philp and Dr Euan Kay where she will bring together synthetic self-replicators (Philp group) and dynamic nanoparticle-bound monolayers (Kay group) to create the first examples of artificial replicators operating at nanoscale interfaces. Outside chemistry, she likes sport (particularly horse-riding, karate and climbing), reading and walking in nature, photographing landscapes.

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March 07, 2020

Science Discovery Day

Science Discovery Day

@ St Andrews

March 23, 2020

Annual Conference

CDT Annual Conference

St Andrews

April 06, 2020

Talk from Rob Young of GSK

Talk from Rob Young on "Expanding the Medicinal Chemistry Synthetic Toolbox"

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