The prize is intended to reward young researchers who are capable of escaping from the stereotype of narrow specialisation to engage with translational medicine, and display a wider grasp of the significance and potential applicability of their research. Previous prize winners have gone on to develop their research internationally.
Explaining her research Sarah-Beth said: “Molecular dynamics simulations offer a complementary approach to the investigation of biomolecules of interest. Molecules exist neither in isolation, nor as static objects; the cell is a dynamic, messy, and complex environment, and many diseases arise from disruption in the tight control of cellular processes. A ‘multiscale’ approach to the investigation of the peripheral membrane protein PIP5K1A, a lipid kinase implicated in cancer, provides a paradigm for a new and more detailed investigation into cellular signalling processes. An intimate understanding of the molecular motions of these molecules in a basic sciences context is integral to the process of designing targeted therapeutic for clinical applications across a wide range of diseases.”
Sarah-Beth completed her undergraduate degree in Biochemistry at King's College, London, graduating in 2014. She undertook an MRes in Molecular Biophysics, also at King's, where she carried out a molecular dynamics project investigating mechanisms of action of antimicrobial peptides. Sarah joined Wadham in 2015 to study for her DPhil in Biochemistry and was elected President of the Middle Common Room in April 2016.
The Peter Beaconsfield Prize is awarded annually, by the University of Oxford Medical Sciences Division, with a winner’s prize of £1000. The Prize is open to University of Oxford postgraduate students in Physiological Sciences (registered in the department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, Pharmacology, Pathology, Biochemistry or Experimental Psychology), who, in the 12 months preceding the closing date for applications for the prize, shall have applied for transfer to DPhil status.