Prof. Elizabeth Shephard University College London, UK1 Talk
Elizabeth Shephard is Professor of Molecular Biology at UCL, Division of Biosciences. She has a deep interest in research-based education and how students learn and transition to university. Professor Shephard has held several high-level teaching positions such as Vice-Dean, Education, Faculty of Life Sciences, UCL and is the recipient of... read moreseveral teaching awards. She is a principal fellow of the Higher Education Academy (AdvanceHE) and is the co-author of the student textbook ‘Cell Biology: A Short Course. Her research is focussed on the enzyme family, flavin-containing monooxygenases (FMOs). These proteins have dual roles both in drug and endogenous metabolism. The biochemical consequences of genetic variation within the FMO family members for drug therapy and human health is a particular focus. Of special interest is the genetic disorder primary trimethylaminuria, which arises because bacteria in the gut can break down certain dietary constituents and in the process release trimethylamine. Mutations in the FMO3 gene prevent conversion of odorous trimethylamine to its non-odorous N-oxide. The disorder manifests in the excretion of large amounts of trimethylamine in the breath, sweat and urine. She is a scientific adviser to the patient advocacy group MEBO and has produced learning materials for the public on FMOs and trimethylaminuria.