MRS Spring 2023 Conference
The group headed to San Francisco for the 50th Anniversary MRS Spring Meeting. Marwa Rizk gave a talk, and Connor Wells and Sam Ackerley presented posters, with Connor winning a poster prize – congratulations! Well done to all for a fruitful trip!
Marwa Rizk gave a talk and a poster presentation, and Connor Wells presented a poster at the Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences 2022 meeting in Belfast. Well done to both, who represented the group fantastically!
Sir Geoffrey Wilkinson Dalton Symposium
Viliyana Lewis presented a poster at the 2022 Sir Geoffrey Dalton Symposium at the RSC, Burlington House in London. She was also awarded a PhD poster runner up prize – congratulations!
Well done to PhD student Adila Islam, who recently won an “Excellent Poster Prize” at the 5th International Caparica Conference on Chromogenic and Emissive Materials 2022 in Portugal. On a winning streak, Adila also then won a poster prize at the ACM CDT’s summer retreat in Girona, Spain! Congratulations!
Final Year Presentations
Well done to Marwa Rizk (middle left), Connor Wells (top left), Viliyana Tsanova (top right), and Mark Hardmeier (middle right), who recently gave their final year PhD presentations to the Department – doing the group proud!
~~Update: Well done to Viliyana Lewis who was a Runner Up for the Clarke Prize in the Department of Chemistry final year talks!~~
Congratulations to Dr Aaron King (left below) and Dr Clarissa Harman (right below) who defended their PhDs in April and July this year, respectively! They have both moved on to fantastic positions in companies and we will miss them both!
Welcome to Isabel Raby, a new PhD student who joined the group in September. Isabel will be working with all things magnetic, anisotropic, and using flow chemistry in her endeavours!
Dr Dedman is on a roll, with the award of a Doctoral Researcher Award 2021 Recognition Award (more info) – many congratulations!
Congratulations to Dr Craig Dedman who successfully defended his thesis, passing with no corrections – well done!
Welcome to Dr Fuqiang Chang, who started a postdoctoral position in the group in June. Fuqiang will be working on magnetic 1D nanomaterials. Isabel Raby joins the group in September to carry out a PhD in 1D nanostructures, fresh from her Masters degree in Durham! Welcome to both new group members!
Congratulations to Viliyana Lewis for winning the 2nd year Inorganic Chemistry PhD student poster Prize for her poster “MRI as a detection tool: Development of novel MRI contrast agents for detection of nerve agent adducts”.
Congratulations to Marwa Rizk who won a poster prize as part of the Materials for Life session at the 15th Materials Chemistry, for her poster “Development of multifunctional mesoporous silica nanoparticles for diagnosis and treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma”.
Craig has published two papers describing the impact of titania nanoparticles and ceria nanoparticles on marine microbes. His titania work also made the cover of Environmental Science: Nano!
Ziwei’s review on Theranostics for MRI-guided therapy has been published in View – DOI
Mary’s work on layered terbium hydroxides for biomedicine was published in Dalton Transactions – DOI
Well done to Sam Ackerley, who gave his first ever talk at an international conference (and as a 1st year PhD student!), at MC-15, the 15th Materials Chemistry Conference, a virtual event this year.
Other good news
Gemma has been promoted to Associate Professor, effective from 1st October 2021.
We welcomed lots of new people this year! Welcome to new PDRA Dr Joe Manning who will be managing the group while Gemma is on maternity leave. Welcome to new PhD student Sam Ackerley, who who started his PhD in May 2020 supported by the CDT in Transformative Pharmaceutical Technologies. Welcome to new PhD students Adila Islam and Aoife Kavanagh, who joined the group in October 2020 through the Centre for Doctoral Training in the Advanced Characterisation of Materials. Looking forward to welcoming you all to the team and working with you!
Ziwei’s paper on mapping drug release using MRI is now out in the Journal of Materials Chemistry B – DOI
Craig’s paper on the mechanisms of silver nanoparticle toxicity is now out in Science of the Total Environment – DOI
Aaron’s paper on precision designed MRI contrast gents is now out in Journal of Colloid and Interface Science – DOI
We welcomed 2 new PhD students to the group, Mark Hardmeier, who will be supervised by Dr Davies and Dr Williams (Pharmacy), and Mary Strimaite, who started her PhD supervised by Dr Gareth Williams and Dr Gemma-Louise Davies, sponsored by the EPSRC funded CDT in Advanced Therapeutics and Nanomedicines.
Congratulations to Viliyana, who won the annual Departmental Photography ‘Research as Art’ Competition, with her snap “Frankie says Relax”!
PhD student Aaron King recently gave his first ever talk at an International Conference, the 14th International Conference on Materials Chemistry, which a sub-set of the group also attended.
Left: Aaron giving his talk at MC-14; Right: the group representing Gd on the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Periodic Table (as part of the International Year of the Periodic Table!)..
The Davies group welcomes another PhD student, Mary Strimaite, who starts her PhD supervised by Dr Gareth Williams and Dr Gemma-Louise Davies, sponsored by the EPSRC funded CDT in Advanced Therapeutics and Nanomedicines.
Gemma has been nominated for a UCL Student Choice Award in the category “Outstanding Research Supervision”!
First Dr from the group!
The first Davies group PhD student passed his viva on 20th March 2019 – congratulations Dr Lee!
Clarissa’s first paper
Clarissa’s review on Pickering emulsions for biomedical applications was published in Current Opinions in Colloid and Interface Science, as part of the Outstanding Young Researchers Issue. Click here to read it!
Gemma’s new role
Gemma-Louise has recently become an Associate Editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry Journal, the Journal of Materials Chemistry B. Go here for more details!
The group welcome’s Teresa Insinna, an UG Summer student, supported by an EPSRC Vacation Bursary who will be working on magnetic nanostructures.
Well done and bye!
Congratulations to MSci student Markus Grueter, who received an overall 1st class MSci Chemistry degree from UCL, and a fantastic 78% in his research project in the group! Best of luck with your future career!
We have another vacancy for an EngD studentship (equivalent to PhD) partnered with DSTL, designing imaging agents capable of detection of nerve agents. Take a look and apply here.
New group members!
In March 2018, Ziwei Zhang joined the group. Ziwei will be jointly supervised between Gemma and Dr Gareth Williams in the School of Pharmacy and will be working on drug delivery vehicles.
In September 2018, Clarissa Harman and Alex Furby join the group. Clarissa will be jointly supervised between Gemma, Dr Stefan Guldin (Chemical Engineering), Dr Gareth Williams (Pharmacy) and Dr Sudax Murdan (Pharmacy), as well as being supported by Quoteint Science. Alex Furby will be jointly supervised between Gemma and Dr Vijay Chudasama (Chemistry).
We have an opportunity for an enthusiastic candidate to do a PhD with Dr Vijay Chudasama (60%) and Dr Gemma-Louise Davies (40%) at UCL Chemistry. Visit here for more info: deadline 8th January.
New group members!
We welcome 2 new PhD students to the group, Aaron King and Craig Dedman, as well as Masters student Markus Grueter.
The group’s latest paper in Chemical Science can now be viewed here.
Title: Magnetically activated adhesives: Towards on-demand magnetic triggering of selected polymerisation reactions
Abstract: On-demand initiation of chemical reactions is becoming increasingly popular in many areas. The use of a magnetic field to trigger reactions is an intriguing concept, with vast potential in both research and industrial settings, though it remains a challenge as yet unsolved. Here we report the first example of on-demand magnetic activation of a polymerisation process using an anaerobic adhesive formulation as an example of this new approach toward triggering polymerisation reactions using an external magnetic field. Our strategy involves the use of a colloidal system comprising functional methacrylate ester monomers, peroxide and CuII-salt as polymerisation initiators and magnetic nanoparticles coated with an oxidising shell. This unique combination prevents reduction of the reactive transition metal (CuII) ion by the metal substrates (steel or aluminium) to be joined – hence inhibiting the redox radical initiated cationic polymerisation reaction and efficiently preventing adhesion. The polymerisation and corresponding adhesion process can be triggered by removal of the functional magnetic particles using a permanent external magnet either prior to formulation application or at the joint to be adhered, enabling the polymerisation to proceed through CuII-mediated reduction. This new approach enables on-demand magnetically-triggered reaction initiation and holds potential for a range of useful applications in chemistry, materials science and relevant industrial manufacturing.
Poster Prize for Charlotte Fletcher
Congratulations to PhD student Charlotte Fletcher who won the ‘Best Poster’ Award at SCI’s Materials Science Conference and BBQ in London in September 2017. Well deserved for lots of hard work! Link
Different place, same research!
Gemma has now officially moved to UCL’s Department of Chemistry, as of 13th July. Her research team will be split between UCL and the University of Warwick, but the research into all things nano will continue!
Paper published in Scientific Reports
Title: Rare Earth Doped Silica Nanoparticles via Thermolysis of a Single Source Metallasilsesquioxane Precursor
Abstract: Rare earth metal doped silica nanoparticles have significant advantages over traditional organic dyes and quantum dots. Silsesquioxanes are promising precursors in the production of silica nanoparticles by thermolysis, due to their structural similarities with silica materials. This manuscript describes the production of a new Eu(III)-based metallasilsesquioxane species and its use as a single source precursor in the thermolytic production of luminescent rare earth metal doped silica nanoparticles with characteristic emission in the visible region of the spectrum.
Gemma-Louise was awarded best Early Career Presentation at the 7th Annual Royal Society of Chemistry Chemical Nanoscience Symposium in the University of Newcastle on 28th March 2017.
October 2016 sees the arrival of Charlotte Fletcher, who is joining to group to start her PhD in collaboration with Profs. Andrew McAinsh and Rob Cross in Warwick Medical School, as well as two MChem students, Gabrielle Newson and Claudia Fryer. Welcome all!
Congratulations to 1st year PhD student Henry Lee, who has won 2nd prize in the Materials and Analytical Science Annual Conference – well done!