5 PDRAs are appointed to the programme, based at St Thomas' hospital
The programme has appointed 5 post-doctoral research assistants, who will each be working closely with one another to deliver the research aims. Dr. Peter Gawne was the first to be appointed, joining Dr. Rafa Torres working on cell tracking and nanomedicine. Peter received his Masters in Chemistry from the University of Hull, before joining the Medical Imaging CDT at KCL and Imperial College London in 2015. He has spent the last four years obtaining an MRes in Medical Imaging, a PhD on the radiolabelling of cells and nanomedicines, and trying to figure out if 'chemist' is still an accurate descriptor for himself. Peter is also a firm advocate for engaging the public about science and research, and has helped organise several Public Engagement initiatives including several ‘Pint of Science’ events and a stand at the Royal Society Summer Exhibition. Our second programme post-doc is Dr. Edward Waters who will be working mainly with Dr. Rick Southworth to assess preclinical viability of radiotracers, focusing on applications in cardiology. Ed has been a part of the department since he joined as a RADPET student in 2012-2013, later going on to do a PhD developing novel PET probes for Imaging Cardiac Oxidative Stress. Most recently he was awarded a one-year fellowship supported by the CME to research a new line of radioprobes and methods for detecting tracer accumulation. Dr. Charlotte Rivas has joined to work on chelator design supported by both Dr. Michelle Ma at King's and Prof. Nick Long at Imperial. Charlotte completed her PhD at Imperial in 2015, working on multimodal imaging agents for the in vivo detection of zinc. Charlotte continued for one year as a Postdoctoral Researcher before being awarded a JSPS (Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) Fellowship in 2016 to carry out research in the laboratory of Professor Yasuteru Urano at The University of Tokyo. Here she worked on designing activatable fluorescence probes for the detection of enzymes overexpressed in cancer tissues. Upon returning to the UK she joined Dr Ma's lab at King's, designing new bifunctional chelators for therapeutic radiometals. Her role on the MITHRAS programme will facilitate collaboration between the labs at King's and Imperial. Dr. Zilin Yu will be supporting radionuclide production for the programme, his experience in this stems from his PhD at the University of Groningen, from where he moved to KCL. For the last 6 years he has been working here on the production and translation of radiometals and radiometal-based radiopharmaceuticals. Dr. Steven Kealey joined most recently to support the organic radiochemistry aims of the programme. After completing his PhD in Chemistry at Imperial College London in 2008, Steve has worked as a researcher in PET radiochemistry, with positions at the University of Bath, Imperial and King’s College London. He has worked closely with researchers at the Imanova Centre for Imaging Sciences (now known as Invicro, formerly the GSK Clinical Imaging Centre) at Hammersmith Hospital. Most recently Steve worked at the Wolfson Brain Imaging Centre at the University of Cambridge before returning to King’s in 2020. His research interests include novel radiolabelling methodologies and the development of new radiotracers for applications in brain imaging and oncology. We welcome the 5 post-docs to the programme and look forward to welcoming more to support our research activities at Southampton and Imperial in the near future.