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 and AD, a much needed tool in this research area.  My expertise in biomarker development has also been used in the development of a novel biosensor that detects drug sensitivity in Acute Myeloid Leukemia patients in collaboration with a Biosensor team led by Dr Elizabeth Anderson, UWE.  Recent collaborations have extended my interest in the role of the hBCAT proteins as prognostic markers for Gliomas (Dr Kathreena Kurian, University of Bristol, UK).  Moreover, we have identified metabolic profiles that correlate with brain imaging and cognitive assessment studies of AD patients compared with controls (Dr Elizabeth Coulthard, Prof Risto Kaupinnen and Dr Robin Holmes, University of Bristol).  Currently, I supervise and direct 6 PhD students and 2 Research Fellows.  My research has resulted in attracting over £1.9 million in grant income both independently and in collaboration with several colleagues at UWE, Randox, Lonza and Frenchay Neuroscience Department, Bristol, UK.

Area of expertise

LECTURER IN CLINICAL AND METABOLIC BIOCHEMISTRY. Undergraduate and postgraduate
Module leader: for Level 1, Introduction to biology of disease; Level 3, Clinical Biochemistry and MSc, Clinical Biochemistry.
INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL EXAMINER FOR PHD DEGREES. Areas of expertise include: Biochemistry, Clinical Biochemistry, Dementia, Microbiology.
EXTERNAL EXAMINER FOR BMS DEGREES: The University of Brighton.

Publications

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