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The University of Southampton
Biological Sciences

Maddie Louise Newby BSc Pharmacology 2020

Research Technician in Glycobiology

Maddie Louise Newby's Photo

I joined the University of Southampton in 2017 to study BSc Pharmacology. The choice of optional modules was an alluring aspect that separated Southampton from other universities as it gives you some control over the direction of your studies. As a member of the Biological Sciences Society, I felt part of a cohesive and approachable community which made my transition into university life easy.

In the summer between second and third year I undertook a 4-month placement in Professor Max Crispin’s lab where my research primarily focussed on antibody engineering. This experience massively boosted my independence and supported my studies as I gained first-hand research experience and became familiar with a wide range of techniques that have supplemented my current path towards a research career.

The choice of optional modules was an alluring aspect that separated Southampton from other universities as it gives you some control over the direction of your studies. As a member of the Biological Sciences Society, I felt part of a cohesive and approachable community which made my transition into university life easy

Since graduating, I have been working as a research technician under the supervision of Professor Max Crispin. The group investigates and exploits protein glycosylation for construction of HIV immunogens and breast cancer immunotherapies. I began working when research was heavily focussed on SARS-CoV-2 and the team had been collaborating with the Birmingham partnership. I expressed and purified recombinant viral Spike glycoprotein which was used for the optimisation of a sensitive anti-IgG/A/M SARS-CoV-2 antibody test, launched by the Binding Site. For this, I was awarded the Student Contribution to Pharmacology Prize by the British Pharmacological Society. I hope to use the experience I’ve collected (and will continue to develop) to pursue a PhD in antiviral therapeutics.

Make the most of the time you have at uni to explore hobbies – join societies and classes! Or like me, instead of proactive activities, adopt an obsessive baking hobby.

P.S. don’t use Wikipedia as your primary source of information and stop going to the library with your friends if you actually want to do work!

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