The human body is composed of trillions of cells. Each individual cell communicates with others and performs certain tasks within the collective to keep our bodies working. Their ability to send and receive signals is vital, and when communication is disrupted, disease ensues. Many therapeutic drugs, for a multitude of diseases, target specific cell receptors – proteins on the cell surface that receive messages. Restore the communication, and you can restore normal function.
The Society is delighted to congratulate Dr Christopher Draper-Joyce, the 2021 recipient of the Phillip Law Postdoctoral Award, and the first to be awarded in the new category of Biomedical and Health Sciences. Christopher’s postdoctoral work extends his analytical and molecular pharmacology skillset into the field of structural biology, shedding new light on the molecular mechanisms of drug-receptor action.
What does DNA, snowflakes and the hydrophobic effect have in common? They are all example of molecular self-assembly! Inspired by this process of nature, Dr Nisa Salim used attractive and repulsive forces to influence molecules to interact, and in doing so created an array of nanostructures capable of becoming solar cells, drug delivery systems, and in her newest venture – manipulating carbon fibre to be stronger than steel, lighter than aluminium and even electrically conductive! For her work in carbon manufacturing, Dr Nisa Salim was awarded the 2020 Phillip Law Postdoctoral Award for the Physical Sciences and explains how a nature-inspired approach to manufacturing can be the key to many issues facing our time – from climate control, water management and even high speed travel.