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Student Profiles

The Graduate Studies Committee awards prizes each year to current or recently graduated students of NDM supervisors on the basis of their publication record, the impact and novelty of their research, references, and the impact of their research within the department.

NDM Graduate Student Prize Winners 2020

Overall Prize
  • Young Chan Kim - Overall Winner
  • Lucy Garner - Overall Winner
Year Prizes
  • Mehreen Datoo - Year 2 Prize winner
  • Jolynne Mokaya- Year 3 Prize winner
  • Mo Yin - Year 3 Prize winner
  • Peter Yeow- Year 4 Prize winner
Additional Prizes
  • Myo Maung Maung Swe - Public Engagement Prize winner
  • Marya Sabir - Outstanding Work Outside of Degree Prize winner
  • Sai Thein Than Tun - Outstanding Work Outside of Degree Prize winner

NDM Graduate Student Prize Winners 2019

Overall Prize
Year Prizes
  • Ryan Walker - Year 2 Prize winner
  • Maria Prange-Barczynska - Year 2 Prize winner
  • Janine Gray - Year 3 Prize winner
  • Makoto Saito - Year 4 Prize winner
  • Virginia Schmid - Year 4 Prize winner
Additional Prizes
  • Lauren Wedekind - Public Engagement Prize winner
  • Davide Bilardi - Outstanding Work Outside of Degree Prize winner

NDM Graduate Student Prize Winners 2018

Overall Prize
  • Reid Alderson - Overall Winner for his extensive publication record and innovative work using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to provide atomic-level insight into both the structures and dynamics of biomolecules. Reid's research is focussed on understanding how proteins fold and how molecular chaperones prevent protein misfolding and aggregation, a process which could enable future therapeutics to be designed. Reid has 8 publications so far with another two that have been submitted.  These include 5 first author papers in presigious journals such as. Read Reid's story
  • Marketa Tomkova- Highly Commended in Overall Category (Benjamin Schuster-Böckler and Skirmantas Kriaucionis, Ludwig) for her impressive number of publications (four first-author and four collaborative papers) and the profound impact of her work (demonstrating that intra-cellular processes like DNA methylation or DNA replication collectively influence the occurrence of mutations in healthy cells, eventually leading to cancer) on her field. These technical and conceptual advances are now being used by others around the world to understand how cancer arises in different tissue types. Read Marketa's story
  • Eamon Byrne - Highly Commended in Overall Category (Christian Siebold, STRUBI) for his outstanding work on a highly challenging project -targeting the G-protein coupled receptor(GPCR) and Hedgehog morphogen signal transducer, using techniques not yet used in our division. This work led to a first author paper in Nature and Eamon is continuing to solve further structures and has co-authored several other publications.
Year Prizes
  • Simon Davis - 2nd Year Prize Winner (Roman Fischer, TDI) for contributing crucial data to 2 publications in 2018 in high impact and specialist journals, co-authoring 2 papers as well as publishing a first-author paper, which was very well received in the proteomics community as it reports the deepest high-content proteome in a cell line so far. Simon has developed a new methodology to identify up to 4000 proteins from only 150 individual neurons after microdissection which has already allowed the first proteomic characterisation of Betz cells, giving exciting insight into the differential functions in comparison to other moto-neurons such as Purkinje cells.
  • Fazle Chowdhury - 2nd Year Prize Winner (Susanna Dunachie, TropMed) for his excellent work, two oral conference presentations and four publications in peer-reviewed good impact journals. Fazle was the driver and first author for the first comprehensive review of all culture-confirmed melioidosis cases diagnosed so far in Bangladesh, this in the context of melioidosis not being recognised as a significant disease in this region. Read Fazle's story
  • Lucy Walters - 3rd Year Prize Winner for recently publishing some of her research in a first author publication in Nature Communications. In this article she provided the first structural evidence that the non-classical MHC molecule, HLA-E, is capable of binding HIV and Mycobacteria tuberculosis derived epitopes for presentation to CD8+ T cells. Previously, it was thought that HLA-E exclusively bound a small set of MHC class Ia leader sequence derived peptides for presentation to NK cells. All previous structures of HLA-E were crystallised in complex with MHC class Ia derived signal peptides Read Lucy's story
  • Linxin Li - 4th Year Prize Winner (Colin Goding, Ludwig) for being an outstanding student and publishing a first author Nature Communications paper despite being under heavy pressure from a competing lab. Linxin is also a third author on a paper just published in PNAS. In addition, he has also undertaken successfully a screen of 1600 FDA-approved drugs for those that  that regulate a key gene implicated in cancer and neurodegeneration and so should have another first authorship paper and other work he has done is currently being followed up by a post-doc and will no doubt form the basis of another paper. Read Linxin's story
  • Michael White - 4th Year Prize Winner for his commitment to translational research into Barrett’s oesophagus and oesophageal adenocarcinoma. His co-first author manuscript in nature communications investigating the development of Barrett’s oesophagus. He has collaberated with clinical departments and other groups in the NDM, and been involved in setting up a large clinical tissue bank. This work has lead to Co-authorship of 8 manuscripts from his DPhil so far.
Additional Prizes
  • Jyothi Purushotham - Outstanding Work Outside of degree Prize Winner (Teresa Lambe, Jenner) for her work with co-founding and becoming the first president of People Oriented Development (POD), a global health capacity-building organisation which partners with local medical or public health institutions and relevant community stakeholders to co-create programmes to fill gaps in relevant knowledge and skills.

NDM Graduate Student Prize Winners 2017

Overall Prize
    • Michael Reschen - Overall Winner (Chris O'Callaghan, CCMP) for his work on identifying a novel molecular mechanism for a GWAS hit in atherosclerosis, so identifying a new inflammatory pathway of real therapeutic interest in this desease. His work also led to the identification of a transcriptional pathway not previously implicated in atherosclerosis. Michael's work has already led to multiple first author articles.
      Read Michael's story
    • Phelim Bradley - Highly Commended in Overall Category (Zamin Iqbal, WHG)
      Phelim was highly commended for his work on algorithms for analysing clinical microbial genetic data. His Mykrobe predictor is currently being used by Public Health England. Phelim's software is used in the analysis of every tuberculosis case in England.
      Read Phelim's story
Year Prizes
  • Janine Gray - Highly Commended (1st Year) (Paul Brennan, SGC) for her work so far on an ambitious DPhil project targeting the Ras superfamily of small GTPases in a novel manner via their effectors. She is also the only first year student asked to speak at the MSD DPhil day in July, winning second prize for her presentation.
    Read Janine's story
  • Zhiyuan Hu - 2nd Year Prize Winner (Christopher Yau, WHG) for her work on a 'side project' alongside her main DPhil studies. This side project was developed to assist Zhiyuan's bioinformatics skills and produced a computer algorithm and performed gene expression analysis to perform a pan-cancer analysis across The Cancer Genome Atlas.
    Read Zhiyuan's story
  • James Fielding - Highly Commended (2nd Year) (Tammie Bishop, NDMRB) for his work on elucidating the role of the HIF pathway in proliferation and tumorigenesis. James' current work involves manipulating the HIF2/PHD2 regulatory pathway to develop a mouse model of paraganglioma.
    Read James' story
  • Jeffrey Lienert - 3rd Year Prize Winner (Felix Reed-Tsochas, SBS) for his work on how human social interactions impact health through social networks. Jeffrey is using medical records and administrative data to understand the health effects of being simultaneously located in a hospital ward or room. Jeffrey's course means that he co-ordinates this project between Oxford and the National Institutes of Health in the USA.
    Read Jeffrey's story
  • Genevieve Martin - Highly Commended (3rd Year) (John Frater, ExpMed)for her work on T cell immunity and the HIV reservoir during primary HIV infection. Genevieve is exploring the relevance of T cell exhaustion to HIV cure strategies. During her DPhil she has presented her research at several international conferences and has published two first author publications.
    Read Genevieve's story
  • Raquel Cuella-Martin - 4th Year Prize Winner (Ross Chapman, WHG) for her work on characterising the function of the p53 binding protein 1 (53BP1) using a complement of cell biology, mammalian genetics and biochemical approaches to tackle the problem.
Additional Prizes
  • Emma Hodson - Outstanding Achievement Prize Winner (Tammie Bishop, NDMRB) for her excellent long distance running achievements alongside her research. Emma has won numerous races, including the Varsity Marathon (part of the London Marathon) and the Chiltern Chase 10k.
  • Bipin Adhikari - Public Engagement Prize Winner (Phaik Yeong Cheah, TropMed) for championing science-based community activities in Bangkok, Thailand. He has helped to organise the Bangkok Scientific Cafe and science festival in the city. His research also focuses on community engagement and changing perceptions in health.
    Read Bipin's story

Graduate Research Prize Winners 2016

  • Emma Davenport (Julian Knight, WHG) for her excellent work on investigating the genetic determinants of variation in the human response to both common and rare infection, focusing on sepsis, influenza and common variable immunodeficiency disorders. Her work included the development of the largest established adult sepsis cohorts for functional genomic analysis.
    Read Emma's story
  • Symon Kariuki (Kevin Marsh, TropMed) for his work on the relationship between acute seizures and behavioural problems in tropical Africa. Symon undertook the largest survey of behaviour problems of children in Africa, screening 3,273 childen in Kilifi, Kenya. He also published 15 primary research papers (11 as first author) during his DPhil studies. 
    Read Symon's story
  • Sarah McCuaig (Fiona Powrie, Kennedy Institute) for her discovery of a novel driver in colorectal cancer and insight into its mechanism of action. Her work laid the foundation for a successful MRC Award and has resulted in the filing of a patent around this work. Sarah's overall contribution to the science, translatablilty of her work and public communication make her a worthy Prize winner.
    Read Sarah's story
  • Manuel Rivas (Peter Donnelly, WHG) for his research on the development of novel methods for the detection and interpretation of rare variant associations in complex diseases, and the application of those methods to large data sets. Manny's achievements included the development of several software programmes, collaborative involvement in over ten large-scale studies and contributory or main authorship in a number of papers.
    Read Manuel's story
  • Joshua Tan (Kevin Marsh, TropMed) for his excellent work on the identification of human monoclonal antibodies that bind to P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes. Joshua found a novel mechanism of antibody diversification which suggested target antigens that may be potential malaria vaccine candidates. His research in both Kilifi, Kenya and Bellizona, Switzerland has led to a first author paper in Nature which has received over 10,000 page views.
    Read Joshua's story

Graduate Research Prize Winners 2015

  • Tao-Hsin Chang (Yvonne Jones, STRUBI) for his committed and excellent work on Norrin-dependent Wnt/β-catenin signalling. Tao-Hsin's bold decision to work on what was widely considering to be a very challenging target yielded fruit: he developed novel methods for high level expression and purification of Norrin. His work has also been recently published in eLife and Nature.
    Read Tao-Hsin's story
  • Susanne Hodgson (Simon Draper, Jenner) for successfully undertaking the first controlled human malaria infection (CHMI) clinical trial in Kenya - the first attempt to use the CHMI model to understand naturally acquired immunity against malaria. Susanne has also produced five first author papers from her DPhil.
    Read Susanne's story
  • Nicole Stoesser (Tim Peto, ExpMed) for her work on antimicrobial resistance in both Oxford and South-East Asia. Nicole's work has shown the various transmission mediators of antimicrobial resistance in gram negative bacteria. Her work has been hugely collaborative, working with colleagues in Cambodia, Nepal and the USA. Nicole is currently expanding her DPhil work into other areas.
    Read Nicole's story
  • Melania Zauri (Skirmantas Kriaucionis, Ludwig) for her work on using epigenetics to fight cancer. Her work has opened up a new potential intervention for some cancers, including pancreatic cancers where the number of treatments lack effectiveness. Melania has also been involved in outreach events, promoting the Ludwig Institute and science more generally. Melania's work has also recently been published in Nature.
    Read Melania's story