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Dr Wendy Heywood
1C- Biochemistry
UCL Institute of Child Health
30 Guilford Street
  • Research Associate in Translational Biomarker Discovery
  • Genetics & Genomic Medicine Dept
  • UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
  • Faculty of Pop Health Sciences

Born and raised in the UK, I studied Molecular Genetics at Kings College London. I obtained my PhD at University College London on the effects of nutritional programming on islet cell function and the key pancreatic glucose regulatory enzyme Glucokinase.  My  work/research/ achievements in this area led to a publication and the annual Jean Rey award for nutrition at the European Society for Paediatric Gastroenterology Hepatology & Nutrition meeting in 2002.  My first post-doc position was at UCL Eastman Dental Institute, London investigating the bacterial Cytolethal Distending Toxin.  I took up a post-doctoral position back at the UCL Institute of Child Health on the proteomic investigation of maternal plasma for biomarkers of Down syndrome affected pregnancies which resulted in the discovery of 2 new biomarkers which were published and patented.  This position at the Biological Mass Spectrometry Centre was crucial in my professional development since working under the supervision of Dr Kevin Mills I have acquired and advanced many of my core skills in proteomics, bioinformatics and mass spectrometry. I have continued to work with Dr Kevin Mills and become instrumental in building and establishing the proteomics service for UCL internal and external researchers. Moreover, my role was essential in the development of the diagnostic side of the centre to create the translational research focused laboratories at the UCL Institute of Child Health. In this time the BMSC acquired further equipment that enabled us to not only perform biomarker discovery but also translate biomarkers to potential clinical tests using peptide MRM technology on conventional diagnostic laboratory tandem mass spectrometers. On the successful expansion and development of the BMSC I was offered a further position in 2012 to develop and run the ‘GOSomics’ platform.

Research Themes
Research Summary

I extensively work in the field of translational medicine and my current role involves the management & co-ordination of the NIHR BRC funded ‘GOSomics’ platform.  My role also includes research into biomarker discovery and translation of markers to clinical tests using mass spectrometry techniques.

Teaching Summary

To date I have taught and supervised 8 various BSc and MSc students for their final year and maxi projects.
I have been a secondary supervisor for one PhD student who completed their PhD in April 2014. Currently i am secondary supervisor for a BRC funded PhD student investigating proteomics and lipidomics of skin disease. I have recently become a primary supervisor for a part time PhD student investigating metabolism of ageing and disease using stable isotope tracer methodology.

This year I am lecturing on the IBSc paediatirc and MRes Biomedicine Courses at UCL this year on mass spectrometry methods.

I have been invited to the University of Umea to lecture on targeted proteomics as part of a workshop.

As well as students over the years i have trained and supervised many research staff, visiting students and clinicians in mass spectrometry techniques and bioinformatics

01-SEP-2012 BRC Research Associate Institute of Child Health UCL, United Kingdom
01-AUG-2009 – 31-AUG-2012 Research Associate Instiute of Child Health UCL, United Kingdom
01-JUN-2006 – 31-JUL-2009 Post Doctoral Researcher Instiute of Child Health UCL, United Kingdom
01-AUG-2002 – 31-JUL-2005 BBSRC Post Doctoral Researcher Eastman Dental Institute UCL, United Kingdom
Academic Background
2002   Doctor of Philosophy University College London
1998   Bachelor of Science King's College London
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