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Nicola Burgess-Brown


Professor Jagdeep Nanchahal

Kennedy Institute

Professor Ray Owens, Professor Jim Naismith

Strubi, Rosalind Franklin Institute

Professor Chris Schofield, Dr. Akane Kawamura

Department of Chemistry

Dr Shisong Jiang

Department Oncology

Professor John Todd, Dr Marcin Pekalski

JDRF/Wellcome Trust DIL 

Dr Regent Lee, Assoc. Prof. Roman Fisher, Dr Philip Charles

Department of Surgical Sciences, Proteomics Facility, TDI

Sir Simon Lovestone, Professor Ben Davies

Department of Psychiatry & Department of Chemistry

Professor Jeremy Wells

Wageningen University & Research 

Podcast: Unravelling Proteins

Nicola Burgess-Brown

Associate Professor, Biotechnology

Nicola obtained a First Class degree in Applied Biochemical Sciences from the University of Ulster, then spent a year in industry working as a molecular biologist for SmithKline Beecham. She received her D.Phil. in Molecular Microbiology at the University of Nottingham and moved back to industry to do high-throughput (HTP) cloning and validation of therapeutic cancer antigens for Oxford GlycoSciences and subsequently Celltech R&D. Nicola worked 16 years (from 2004-2020) at the SGC, University of Oxford, and since 2011 has led a team developing HTP technologies and supporting SGC projects for the production of human proteins.

My group within the Centre for Medicines Discovery (CMD) has two roles:

(1) A research group experienced in all aspects of biotechnology, molecular biology, protein biochemistry and technology development who support the CMD and other grants.

(2) A Small Research Facility (SRF) providing protein production and mass spectrometry services for internal and external academic and industrial customers.

My team generate the pipeline of clones for the CMD to determine which proteins are expressed in a soluble and stable form suitable for structural and functional studies. We have developed and optimised protocols for high-throughput ligation independent cloning, test expression and purification, large scale expression, protein production and characterisation by mass spectrometry. The platforms established by the Biotechnology team over the past 16 years whilst part of the SGC, enabled the site at Oxford to generate more than 550 novel human protein structures and 17 integral membrane protein structures. The group collaborates and interacts closely with the other CMD teams, to deliver our goals. We have established successful production systems in E. coli, insect and mammalian cells. Discovering new ways to achieve production of all types of proteins (human, viral, antigens, biomarkers, etc.) would open many doors to our long-term goals of understanding how proteins function independently, with partners and also how they interact with drugs.

Recent publications

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