Dr Michelle Ma
Lecturer in Imaging Chemistry
- Imaging sciences
My group's research focuses on engineering metal binding sites into peptides or proteins, through incorporation of a synthetic chelating group or selection of amino acids with affinity for a specific transition metal. I am particularly interested in synthesising and testing new bifunctional chelators that firstly, allow for simple attachment of the chelator to biomolecules such as peptides, proteins, nanoparticles and other targeting vectors, and secondly, allow for coordination of radioactive metal isotopes (including 68Ga, 99mTc, 64Cu, 213Bi, 89Zr, 52Mn and 188Re) that are used in diagnostic imaging or radiotherapy.
These chelator platforms provide versatile tools for nuclear medicine applications, including tracking the migration of cells in vivo, whole body imaging of disease with PET and SPECT, evaluating new protein-based therapies, and targetting radiotherapy of tumours.