Bath student profiles

Intake 2016
Intake 2017
Intake 2018
Intake 2019
Intake 2020


2016 Intake

Jennifer Owen

Jennifer graduated from the University of Bath in 2016 with a Masters in Mathematics. During her degree Jennifer specialized in mathematical modelling and mathematical biology. In her final year project she derived partial differential equations to describe migration persistence in cells and used mathematical and computational modelling to model melanoblast (a pigment producing cell) migration during mouse embryogenesis under supervision by Dr Kit Yates.

Jennifer is currently doing her PhD at the University of Bath under the supervision of Prof Robert Kelsh and Dr Kit Yates in the field of Mathematical Biology. Jennifer is interested in understanding the stripe pattern formation in zebrafish using a combination of mathematical modelling and biological experimentation.

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2017 Intake

Lyndsay Christie


CASE studentship

Lyndsay graduated from The University of Glasgow in 2017 with an MSci in Microbiology. During her degree she spent a year working at the CEFAS laboratory in Weymouth, studying the immune response of rainbow trout to puffy skin disease. This sparked her interest in aquaculture research and she went on to apply for a PhD in that field.

Lyndsay will be undertaking a PhD at the University of Bath supervised by Prof Ed Feil in collaboration with Dr David Verner-Jeffreys at CEFAS. The project will use genomic approaches to characterise the microflora of lumpfish, which are used as a control strategy for sea lice infections in salmon. This aim of this project is to lead to more successful rearing of lumpfish in hatcheries and to improve lumpfish health.

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Jenny Ellis


Jenny graduated from Cardiff University in 2014 with a BSc in Biology. She went on to graduate from Imperial College London in 2015 with an MSc in Taxonomy and Biodiversity, where she studied phylogenetic techniques at the Natural History museum, with a project looking at dating a phylogeny of scolopendromorph centipedes using fossils. It was during her masters that she gained an interest in the combination of morphological and molecular data in phylogenetics.

Jenny is currently doing her PhD at the University of Bath under the supervision of Dr Matthew Wills; a key aim of her research will be to look at Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of morphological data and the best way these methods can be assessed empirically.

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2018 Intake

Sarah Hindson

Sarah graduated from The University of York in 2018 with an MChem in Biological and Medicinal Chemistry.  She undertook her final year research project whilst working at Eli Lilly, studying and setting up a new NMR technique primarily employing the use of residual dipolar couplings. Sarah also had the opportunity to study in York Structural Biology Labs in 2016, working towards the fragment based drug discovery of the Zika NS3 helicase. These two placements inspired her to pursue a PhD in Biochemistry.

Sarah will be based principally at Bath University studying under the supervision of Dr Christopher Pudney and Dr Ross Anderson, her PhD entitled ‘Developing a better-than-nature enzyme platform for biocatalysis applications’.

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Ben May

CASE studentship

In 2018, Ben graduated from The University of Exeter with a degree in Natural Sciences, having specialised in mathematics and physics. Having finished his degree, he spent the summer working within the research group of Professor Andrew Hattersley in the University of Exeter Medical School. His work involved using statistical methods to investigate the likelihood that patients would develop type 2 diabetes based on baseline clinical features.

His interest in the applications of data science and machine learning to scientific problems lead him to undertake a PhD at the University of Bath. His PhD, supervised by Dr Christopher Pudney, seeks to develop artificially intelligent software capable of identifying microbes using data from emission spectra.

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2019 Intake

Rebecca Annells

Rebecca graduated from Oxford University in 2018, with a BA(hons) degree in Cell & Systems Biology. She specialised in neuroscience and cellular physiology & pharmacology, and for her final year research project investigated “the role of GABA in long-term retention of sensorimotor adaptation in the ageing brain”. After graduating, Rebecca undertook laboratory placements at the universities of Oxford and Santiago de Compostela exploring the role of TPC1 in murine metabolism and obesity.

She subsequently gained industry experience working at a medical communications company in Reading.

Rebecca is now keen to return to academic science conducting her own research in the neuroscience and physiology of addiction and pain, using interdisciplinary approaches. Working with Dr Chris Bailey (Bath University) and Prof Eamonn Kelly (Bristol University), Rebecca is investigating “the chronic effects of G-protein biased agonists at the mu opioid receptor in the brain” from molecular through to systemic and behavioural levels.

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Frank Eardley

Frank graduated from Newcastle University in 2019 with an MBiol in Cellular and Molecular Biology. During his degree he undertook a summer studentship investigating the control of spot blotch disease in wheat. For his final year project, he sequenced the genome of a plant colonising strain of Pseudomonas and developed techniques for its use as a synthetic biology chassis organism.

Frank will be based primarily at the University of Bath working on his project titled ‘Environmental bacteria as a reservoir of novel antibiotic resistance mechanisms’ under the supervision of Dr Susanne Gebhard. The project will seek to identify the genes responsible for resistance to antimicrobial peptides in Streptomyces’s and how they are regulated.

Alex McStea

Alex graduated from the University of Bath in 2019 with a BSc in Natural Sciences (Biology major with Physics). During her studies she developed a strong interest in neurodegenerative diseases and cell microscopy. Her final year project, supervised by Dr Julien Licchesi, gave her an opportunity to further these interests by optimising cortical neuron sample preparation for Correlative Light and Electron Microscopy (CLEM).

Alex’s PhD will focus on HECTD1, an E3 ligase involved in the mitochondrial ubiquitination pathway, and will aim to obtain structural information using Cryo-Electron Microscopy. This project will be supervised by Dr Julien Licchesi at the University of Bath and Prof Christiane Berger-Schaffitzel at the University of Bristol.

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Gina Smethurst

CASE studentship

Gina graduated with a BSc in Biochemistry (Cardiff University, 2017) having spent her Professional Training Year investigating the effect of a prion subunit of chromatin-remodelling ATPase SWI/SNF on the chromatin architecture of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. During this time, she developed Next Generation Sequencing and bioinformatics skills, and subsequently expanded these working as the lead technician for the Genomics Research Hub (Cardiff University). Over the last two years Gina has gained an in-depth knowledge of DNA library preparation protocols for both Illumina and Oxford Nanopore sequencing platforms.

For her PhD, Gina will be utilising her knowledge of nanopore sequencing to study a potential palm-oil alternative, the yeast Metschnikowia pulcherrima. Investigating the genetic and epigenetic changes that occur as a result of adaptive laboratory evolution, she will combine these experiments with mathematical modelling and novel bioinformatic tools to investigate correlations between epimutation and genome structure to establish whether beneficial phenotypes can be recovered.

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2020 Intake

Josie Elliott

Josie graduated from the University of Oxford in 2019 after completing an integrated masters in Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry. During her final year Josie worked as part of the Seiradake lab in the Biochemistry department. Her project centred on the structural characteristics and phylogeny of the animal neuronal protein Teneurin.

To pursue her interest in applying her biochemical background to evolutionary research, Josie is currently studying at the University of Bath working with Dr Tiffany Taylor and Dr Edze Westra on the evolutionary consequences of horizontal gene transfer of antiviral defences between bacterial species. Specifically, her project explores how novel CRISPR-Cas systems are regulated following horizontal gene transfer between Pseudomonas species.

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Stephanie Jones

Stephanie graduated from Cardiff University in 2020 with an Integrated Masters degree in Biomedical Science. She completed her masters project under the supervision of Dr Florian Siebzehnrubl in the European Cancer Stem Cell Research Institute, where she investigated the role of alternative splicing of the fibroblast growth factor receptor in glioblastoma. It was throughout her undergraduate studies that Stephanie developed a keen interest in developmental biology and its roots with the aetiology of human disease.

Stephanie will now be working under the supervision of Dr Keith Vance and Dr Robert Kelsh in the University of Bath, combining her research interests to investigate the role of long non-coding RNAs during melanocyte development in zebrafish and human melanoma. Findings from this project will provide important insights into the role of long non-coding RNAs in controlling key cellular processes including growth and differentiation, and how this may contribute to melanoma.

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