Zsofia Hegedus wins prize at School’s Postdoctoral Conference

Congratulations to Zsofia on winning Best Oral Presentation at the School of Chemistry Postdoctoral Conference on 15th Dec 2017.

Her presentation titled ‘Ligand-Directed Dynamic Combinatorial Chemistry for Inhibition of Protein-Protein Interactions’ outlined the development of a dynamic covalent chemistry approach using peptide-small molecule hybrid structures for targeting protein-protein interactions.

Zsofia is a postdoctoral research fellow working with Thomas Edwards and Andy Wilson. She is funded through a personal EU Horizon 2020 Marie Curie Individual Fellowship that started in May 2017, having initially joined the group on the PoPPI programme. Her fellowship Scaffold Hybridization Approach to Protein-Protein Interactions research focuses on the design and structural characterization of protein-protein interaction inhibitors comprising natural and non-natural components. Zsofia joined the group following a PhD thesis at the University of Szeged (Hungary), where she worked on the design, synthesis and structural characterization of bioactive α/β-peptide β-sheet mimetics, under the supervision of Prof Tamas Martinek.

Zsofia’s presentation outlined the development of a state-of-the-art analytical method based on mass-spectrometry to allow characterization of dynamic combinatorial libraries. The approach allows simultaneous characterization/ identification and relative quantitation of significant numbers of library members in a single experiment. Her presentation was recognized for its clarity in explaining a number of diverse concepts and the breadth and scope of experimental work carried out, comprising, protein expression and characterization, fluorescence anisotropy assay development, synthesis of dynamic combinatorial libraries and mass-spectrometry analyses.

Andy Wilson says, This prize is recognition of Zsofi’s intellectual creativity and outstanding experimental skill during a highly productive first year with our team: she has set the stage to deliver a really exciting advance in identification inhibitors of topologically and topographically distinct protein-protein interactions that the community cannot currently address.’’