I am a microbiologist fascinated by the molecular cell biology of single-celled parasites that cause devastating but often neglected diseases. I want to discover how these cells change during their complex life cycles, which takes them on a journey from the gut of blood-feeding insects to the bloodstream and tissues of infected humans and animals. The parasite that I am particularly interested in, Leishmania, invades cells of the immune system whose job it normally is to kill invading microbes. I want to discover how these parasites are able to escape destruction and cause disease.
I worked hard as a postdoc and started my family late: my first daughter was born shortly after I became a URF, my second two years later. Whilst it is daunting to look after small children and build a research group at the same time, I experienced great support from my Department, for example with student supervision during my maternity leaves. Most importantly, my husband and I share childcare and housework equally. We both have posts that allow for flexible working hours, which means we can both spend time with the children and cover for each other when travelling etc.