Professor Myra Conway

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About me

My research focus is on 'Redox Biochemistry, Aging, Neurodegeneration and Biomarker development'.  My research aims to understand how changes in the redox environment can influence the structure/function relationships of proteins under both normal and pathophysiological conditions, in particular proteins with reactive thiol groups.  Currently, I am investigating the role of the human branched chain aminotransferase (hBCAT) proteins in glutamate toxicity, a key contributor to the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD).  I am also developing metabolic maps to ascertain key redox partners that regulate brain glutamate metabolism and protein folding and how this can change with age and age-related conditions.  These studies also contribute to the development of biomarker profiles, which are designed to distinguish between patients with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) and AD, a much-needed tool in this research area.  Here, we have identified metabolic profiles that correlate with brain imaging and cognitive assessment studies of AD patients (Dr Elizabeth Coulthard and Prof Risto Kaupinnen University of Bristol).  Recent collaborations have extended my interest in the role of the hBCAT proteins as key players in cancer biology (Dr Claire Perks, University of Bristol, UK, Dr Ming Dong, USA and Prof Bernhard Radlwimmer, German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg, Germany). 

My research has resulted in attracting over £2.43 million in grant income as lead applicant and with academic and industrial partners.  Externally, I am involved in the Health Integrated Team (HIT) for Dementia.  I actively support public engagement events including those aligned with BRACE and the ARUK.  I am a member of the BRACE Scientific Advisory Grant committee and the South West Dementia Brain Bank management committee.  I contribute as a reviewer and editor for numerous high impact journals and research council funding bodies such as the BBSRC, MRC, Wellcome and the Alzheimer's Society.  I have supervised 17 PhD students and currently supervise 4 PhD students. 

I am passionate about teaching and learning and committed to the development of new opportunities to support our students, such as the MSc in Health Technology, which I act as joint programme leader.  I am an external examiner for the Biomedical Science programme at The University of Strathclyde, University of Westminster and University of Malta.  I promote research-informed teaching through my lead and lecturing in several modules including Clinical Biochemistry (level 3 and MSc) and Blood Science.  I have been nominated by students for "The innovative Teaching Award" , "The Inspirational" award (X2) and "Outstanding teaching" award (X2). Recently, I was nominated for three staff awards: Valuing People Award, Inspiring Leader of the Year award and Inspirational Lecturer of the Year award.

Area of expertise

LECTURER UNDERGRADUATE AND POSTGRADUATE:  Clinical Biochemistry (UG and PG), Blood Science, Infection and disease, Scientific Frontiers, Disease diagnosis and monitoring, Current issues in Biomedical Science, Research Diagnostic Methodologies.

MODULE LEADER: Level 2, Blood Science (Dr May); Level 3, Clinical Biochemistry


INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL EXAMINER FOR PHD DEGREES. Areas of expertise include: Biochemistry, Clinical Biochemistry, Dementia, Microbiology, Cancer Biology.

EXTERNAL EXAMINER FOR BMS DEGREES: University of Strathclyde, University of Malta and University of Westminster (MSc).


May, J., Cox, T., Lamb-Riddell, K., Hansen, M., and Conway, E.E. Shedding smart light on the effectiveness of chemotherapy for leukaemia. Vice Chancellors Challenge Fund

Henley, J., Craig, T., and Conway, M.E. Metabolism and sumoylation BBSRC partnership PhD.

Whittall, T., Thorn, R., and Conway, M.E. Investigation of interactions between multinucleated giant cells and amyloid.

Conway, M.E., Craig, T., Kehoe, and Morgan A. Targeting the autophagy pathway in Alzheimer's disease. BRACE.

Zhang, W., Smith, M., Conway, M.E. and Zook, N. An investigation into the effects of cognitively demanding tasks on eye saccade patterns in the context of the early detection of neurodegenerative disease. (Vice Chancellors Challenge Fund)

Conway, M.E., Craig, T. and Yuill, K. Understanding the metabolic link between Type II Diabetes and Alzheimer's disease. BRACE


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