I received my degree in Biochemistry from the University of Oxford (1993) then undertook a PhD at King's College, London (2001) at the Randall Institute for Cell and Molecular Biophysics and Celltech (now UCB). My thesis was entitled "Structure and Function of Human CD23, the low affinity IgE receptor" which is involved in regulating allergic responses and inflammation pathways with Prof Hannah Gould, Dr Ray Owens and Prof Brian Sutton. I was a Visiting Fellow then subsequently a Research Fellow at the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland USA until 2009 in the laboratory of Dr Martin Gellert investigating the protein-DNA complexes in V(D)J recombination. Together with Dr Santiago Ramon Maiques and Dr Wei Yang, we obtained the first structure of the recombinase essential to development of antigen receptors in the immune system. I returned to the UK as a senior post-doctoral scientist in the laboratory of Prof Keith Caldecott at the Genome Damage and Stability Centre at the University of Sussex. There, I focussed my interests to proteins involved in DNA damage response and DNA repair discovering a common interaction motif for proteins involved in non-homologous end joining and the function of PARP3 in recognising damage to chromatin.
I was awarded a North West Cancer Research Career Development Fellowship in 2019 at the University of Liverpool, mentored by Dr Jason Parsons. As part of the Head and Neck Cancer Research Group, I am investigating methods to improve the radio-sensitivity of head and neck cancer cell by targeting proteins involved DNA repair pathways.