Laura C. McCaughey BacPath 13: Molecular Analysis of Bacterial Pathogens Conference 2015

Laura C. McCaughey

Laura McCaughey is a Sir Henry Wellcome Postdoctoral Research Fellow working at the ithree institute (infection, immunology and innovation) at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS) in collaboration with the University of Oxford. Laura obtained an MSci in Forensic and Analytical Chemistry from the University of Strathclyde, Scotland, in 2010. During this degree Laura undertook a one-year placement at GlaxoSmithKline, Stevenage, UK, where she worked as an analytical chemist. She was then awarded a Wellcome trust PhD scholarship at the University of Glasgow. During her PhD Laura investigated the use of novel species-specific protein antibiotics, termed S-type pyocins, to kill the notoriously difficult-to-treat, and often multi-drug resistant, bacterium P. aeruginosa. Her research involved the discovery and mechanistic, structural and biophysical characterisation of known and novel pyocins and the in vivo testing of these antibiotics in a P. aeruginosa infection model. Laura was awarded a four year Sir Henry Wellcome Postdoctoral Research Fellowship straight out of her PhD, which enabled her to establish international collaborations between UTS and the University of Oxford. Laura’s main research questions are ‘How do bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics and how can we identify novel approaches to antibiotic development to overcome this problem?’ Over the last four years Laura has been actively involved in highlighting the problem of antibiotic resistance, and the interventions necessary to prevent the problem escalating further, to the public. She has achieved this through a number of events, including Glasgow Skeptics speed science, Universities Week at the Natural History Museum, public Q&A sessions titled ‘Living in a post-antibiotic era: the impact on public health’ and 'Living in a post-antibiotic era: the challenge of disease resistance’ and public lectures such as Glasgow Skeptics: After Antibiotics?.

Abstracts this author is presenting: