Centre for Biomolecular Sciences
   
   
  
 

Image of Neil R. Thomas

Neil R. Thomas

Professor of Medicinal and Biological Chemistry, Faculty of Science

Contact

  • workRoom Room C09 Centre for Biomolecular Sciences
    University Park
    Nottingham
    NG7 2RD
    UK
  • work0115 951 3565
  • fax0115 951 3564

Biography

Professor Thomas began his academic career with a 1st Class B.Sc. (Hons) in Chemistry from the University of Southampton in 1987. Remaining there, under the supervision of Professor D. Gani, he obtained his Ph.D. in 1990 working on the elucidation of the mechanism of the pyridoxal phosphate (vitamin B6) dependent enzyme serine hydroxymethyltransferase and 3-methylaspartase. He then worked for the following two years as a NATO/SERC Fellow with Prof. S. J. Benkovic at the Pennsylvania State University, USA. on both the generation and characterisation of catalytic antibodies and the reaction catalysed by dihydrofolate reductase. He returned to the UK in 1992 as a Royal Society University Research Fellow and lecturer at the University of Bath. In 1995, he moved to the School of Chemistry at the University of Nottingham, initially as a Royal Society University Research Fellow and lecturer and then in 2003 as a Senior Lecturer/Associate Professor before becoming Professor of Medicinal & Biological Chemistry in January 2008. His current research interests are in the identification of inhibitors of enzymes essential to Mycobacterium cell wall biosynthesis; synthesis of mechanistic probes based on Coenzyme A, S-adenosylmethione, ATP and biotin; use of enzymes in unusual reaction media (fluorous biphasic systems; supercritical fluids); development of enzyme-based antimicrobial therapies; development of enzyme-activated magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) agents; development of in vivo probes based on quantum dots and protein capsids; healthcare applications of self-assembling proteins including apoferritin and spider silk. He is currently the Biological Chemistry Theme (Division) head and also deputy director of the Centre for Biomolecular Sciences which is currently expanding from 300 to 800 researchers. He has served as a pool and core member of BBSRC Committee C (2010-2014) and the BBSRC TRDF committee, and on the RSC Chemical Biology and Biological Chemistry Interest Group (2008-2016)

He has been Director of Teaching for the School of chemistry and developed the Medicinal and Biological Chemistry family of degree courses in 2005, as well as the assessed year in Industry courses with other colleagues.

Expertise Summary

Mechanistic Enzymology; Protein Engineering; Bio-conjugate Chemistry; Enzyme Evolution; Coenzyme Chemistry; Enzyme Inhibitor design; Medicinal Chemistry; Imaging Probe creation (MRI, fluorescence, chemiluminescence)

Research Summary

Bioorganic Chemistry; Chemical Biology; Biological Chemistry; Enzyme Mechanism; Enzyme Inhibitor; Biomimetic Catalysts; Catalytic Antibodies; Phage Display; Serine Hydroxymethyltransferase; Dioxetane… read more

Selected Publications

Current Research

Bioorganic Chemistry; Chemical Biology; Biological Chemistry; Enzyme Mechanism; Enzyme Inhibitor; Biomimetic Catalysts; Catalytic Antibodies; Phage Display; Serine Hydroxymethyltransferase; Dioxetane chemiluminescence; galactopyranose mutase; glycosidase;

Centre for Biomolecular Sciences

University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0) 115 846 8001
fax: +44 (0) 115 846 8002
email: CBS Enquiries