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Dr Burden’s research team are focused on dissecting the role of proteases in the cellular microenvironment and the mechanisms by which proteases mediate inflammation in cancer, cardiovascular disease and as a result of particulate matter exposure.

Of particular interest, is the role of proteases in chemokine regulation, invasion, immune cell recruitment and angiogenesis.

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Open to PhD applications in the fields of protease biology and inhibitor development (small molecule and biological inhibitors). 

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School of Pharmacy

Roberta Burden

Dr Roberta Burden (PI) 


PUBLIC OUTREACH and key achievements

Dr Burden was strategically involved in the development and characterisation of a therapeutic monoclonal antibody targeting the cysteine protease Cathepsin S. She was involved in conception of the compound, in vitro/in vivo characterisation and pre-clinical analysis. This work resulted in numerous publications and patents. Furthermore, her analysis of the molecular involvement of proteases in the disease microenvironment resulted in seminal findings identifying Cathepsin S as a transcriptional regulator of proinflammatory chemokines such as CCL2 and a mediator of macrophage recruitment.

Alumni: where are they now?

Dr Robyn Foster

PhD Title: Cathepsin S as a therapeutic target in radioresistant glioblastoma

Years of Study: 2012 - 2015
Country: UK
Current position: Medical Writer at 2theNth

Dr Richard Wilkinson

PhD Title: Evaluating Cathepsin S as a target and a biomarker in cancer

Years of Study: 2012-2015
Country: UK
Current position: Post doctoral Research Fellow, Queen's University Belfast

Dr Sinead Magorrian

PhD Title: Elucidating the role of CD74 in cancer

Years of Study: 2012-2016
Country: UK
Current position: Medical Information Officer at ProPharma

Research at Queen's

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