Three 1851 Industrial Fellowships for Oxford Chemistry DPhils

Three 1851 Industrial Fellowships for Oxford Chemistry DPhils

Congratulations to three Oxford Chemistry graduate students, who have been awarded Industrial Fellowships by The Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851.

The Commission awarded 15 Industrial Fellowships this year, which are awarded to graduates with the potential to make an outstanding contribution to industry. Fellowships are awarded for research supported by a company, leading to a patent, product or process improvement and a postgraduate award.

Aleksy Kwiatkowski has been awarded a fellowship for his project “Closing the Loop: A Computational-Experimental Feedback Approach for Predicting Macrocycle Closure”, which aims to leverage advances in computation and data science to understand the factors influencing ring-closing reactions and develop tools to predict their success. These reactions give access to an important class of therapeutic molecules and hence this work hopes to accelerate the drug discovery process.

Aleksy graduated with a first class Master’s degree in Chemistry from the University of Oxford, where he is now undertaking his PhD in Organic Chemistry in the group of Professor Fernanda Duarte. His fellowship is awarded for a project in collaboration with pharmaceutical company Merck Sharp & Dohme (MSD).

Anna Miller’s fellowship is for her project “Feed the world: harnessing Nature’s molecules for maximising future food productivity”, in which she seeks to develop an agrochemical that can inhibit nitrification to help improve the efficacy of fertilisers. Her strategy is to take inspiration from Nature to investigate new classes of nitrification inhibitors that function via novel pathways.

Anna graduated with a first-class Master’s degree in Chemistry from the University of Glasgow, and is currently undertaking a PhD in Professor Darren Dixon’s group at the University of Oxford, after being awarded the Oxford-Radcliffe scholarship in partnership with Syngenta.

Matthew Southern’s project “Building a molecule library to improve development of new medicines” aims to deliver methods for the array synthesis of 3D-rich building blocks featuring sulfonamides, sulfonimidamides, and sulfondiimidamides through photochemical transformations. These motifs are all in high demand in drug discovery and are historically difficult to access, which has limited their exploration.

Matthew is skilled in synthetic organic chemistry, purification techniques and scientific communication. He attended the University of Durham to complete a Masters of Chemistry where he undertook an industrial placement at Sygnature Discovery. As an already experienced chemist, Matthew was offered the role as deputy of the internal high-throughput chemistry project at Sygnature Discovery upon graduation, and is now a DPhil student at Oxford Chemistry in the group of Prof. Michael Willis.