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Akhila is a third-year BBSRC CASE PhD student based at the Photon Science Institute, University of Manchester. Her project is on the use of mass spectrometry imaging methods for the spatial chemical profiling of plant leaves for agrochemicals in collaboration with the Agritech company, Syngenta. Before coming to the UK for her PhD, she did her integrated Bachelor’s and Master of Science programme in Chemistry at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh, India.


She aspires to do translational research and wishes to help bridge the gap between academic and commercial research for students.


When not in the research realm, she likes to binge-watch documentaries, play table tennis and go for hikes.

Akhila Ajith

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Megan is a second-year BBSRC DTP student whose project is focussed on the selective inhibition of pro-inflammatory microRNA’s for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Megan graduated as the University of Leeds’ highest-achieving Medical Science student, including a year-in-industry, where she worked as a Quality Assurance Assistant for an innovative medical devices company, The Binding Site. As well as academic experience, Megan worked through the pandemic as a Biotechnologist, manufacturing the Oxford Astra-Zeneca COVID vaccine. For her professional internship as part of her PhD programme, Megan is working for a virtual drug discovery company, C4X Discovery, learning how to select the next generation targets for curing intractable diseases. 


Alongside her PhD, Megan works for a virtual tuition agency, aiming to ignite a passion for science in the younger generation. In her spare time, you’ll either find Megan in the gym or out enjoying Manchester’s best bars and restaurants!

Megan Taylor

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Montserrat Vega (she, her) is an enthusiastic biotech entrepreneur with an interest in the biomedical sector. Currently in the second-year of a dual Manchester-Beijing PhD programme, she focuses on applying synthetic biology and AI to develop novel therapeutic approaches for cancer. Montserrat has joined different scientific projects in Mexico, Spain and Canada and launched innovation/startup ventures in Romania and LATAM, aiming at cultivating the seeds of a more inclusive world. 

During her spare time, she loves playing chess, theatre and exercising, among many other things!

Miriam Montserrat Vega-Gordillo

Finance Managers

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Alexandra (she/her) is a third-year MSci Pharmacology student, with a prospective final project in Quantum Biology. In the future, after her project on H-tunnelling in enzymes, she wants to pursue a PhD in the effects of electromagnetic fields on cell fate and behaviour. In addition to Quantum Biology, she is interested in computer science, biotech, pharmaceuticals, and is eager about the crossover of these fields, and the potential this meld has to transform the world we know.

As part of the committee, Alexandra hopes to narrow the gap between biotech and academia by fostering relationships among students and professionals in the field.


When not at University, Alexandra tries to go outdoors, hiking and climbing, or you can find her in cafes having conversations with friends.


Medeea Nagy

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Carl (he/him) is a final-year PhD student in pharmacology at the University of Manchester with a passion for research and teaching. His project focused in understanding the effects of clinically relevant doses of radiotherapy in a model of the blood-brain barrier and its components, necessary to protect the brain from harmful substances and secondary cancer cells. Prior to his PhD, Carl obtained a BSc (hons) in Biomedical Sciences at the Federal University of Pernambuco, where he developed several scientific projects in pre-clinical and molecular studies and promoted events aimed to showcase the different specialisations of the profession for peers within the department.


As part of the committee, Carl expects to contribute with the organisation of events aimed to facilitate, shorten, and strengthen the contact between academia and industry. As Financial Manager, Carl hopes to bring new sponsors to help promote and collaborate with the different activities organised by the NWBI committee.


In his spare time, Carl enjoys reading fiction, hiking – specially with my two beautiful dogs – and dancing - also with my doggies!

Carl Carvalho

Media and Communications


Charis is a first-year PhD student at the University of Manchester having just completed their master's degree in Mechatronics engineering. Their project combines machine learning and wearable technology to create systems that recognise and identify physiological reactions and emotional states. 

During their masters, they had the experience of working internships with the University of Manchester and Siemens Mobility for which they are excited to apply their skills. Moving into the world of medical engineering, Charis is excited to network with a broader audience and explore the world of biotechnology and bioelectronics. 

Outside of electronics Charis is a keen PC gamer and self-confessed nerd enjoying various games and media. As well as spreading STEM knowledge via tutoring and volunteering to help out the community.

Charis Whyte


Maya is a third-year student on the MChem Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry course at the University of Manchester. She is currently working on a lab project which involves synthesising model silanes for exploring organosiloxane biocatalysis, using enzymes as a greener alternative to conventional silylation methods.

As well as being a member of the NWBI, Maya is the third-year medicinal chemistry representative at the University.


Maya aims to help organise informative events for students looking to learn more about industry, whilst also enhancing her knowledge of the pharmaceutical field as a part of this initiative.


In her spare time, Maya loves going out to eat at restaurants and is currently learning French.

Maya Popat

© 2022 Miriam Montserrat Vega-Gordillo

Operation Managers


Alix is a final-year undergraduate student studying Biomedical Sciences at the University of Manchester. She loves viruses and wishes to further her studies in virology. She is currently undertaking her final year project, in which she uses molecular cloning techniques to set up Zika virus fusion assays to screen for antivirals. 


Being a committee member of NWBI, Alix hopes to help students explore future career options and provide them with networking opportunities.


In her free time, she likes playing badminton and learning martial arts. She loves parrots and has a cute pet parrot.

Alix Keung


Astrid is a final year cell biology PhD student at the University of Manchester specialised in intracellular transport of organelles. She has an Industrial Cooperative Awards in Science & Technology (CASE) studentship partnered with the microscope company Intelligent Imaging Innovations (3i) and is passionate about encouraging these types of collaborations between academia and industry.

When she is not organising events for the NWBI, she enjoys playing football, attending music gigs, and going to the cinema.

Astrid Boström


Francisco Correia

Francisco is an undergraduate Biotechnology with Entrepreneurship student at The University of Manchester. Throughout his studies he has strived to gain more experience and knowledge by undertaking an internship at the Reward and Action in Health and Disease research group of the Champalimaud Foundation, participating in Biogen and Lemelson-MIT’s Biotechnology and Invention Course and being a part of Manchester’s representative team for the 2024 iGEM Synthetic Biology Competition. He is particularly interested in genetics and the incorporation of AI in biotechnology and drug discovery. In the future he plans to pursue an MBA and a career in biotech.


As an undergraduate student, he empathizes with the challenges students face while attempting to connect with the industry. Therefore, a significant motivation for him is to empower undergraduates and facilitate their access to the industry.


In his spare time he enjoys listening to podcasts, reading and gardening.


Gonzalo is a third-year Medical Biochemistry (BSc) student at the University of Manchester. He is currently undertaking his final year project at Saint Mary’s Hospital, which involves using in vitro models to study human embryo implantation.


During his time in Manchester, he has developed an interest in protein chemistry, bioinformatics, and biotechnology, and he wishes to continue pursuing these interests after the completion of his bachelor’s degree. 


In his spare time, he enjoys watching films, playing chess, football, and listening to music.

Gonzalo Quintanilla Payet


My name is Hadeel, and I am a second-year PhD student at the University of Manchester, specialising in trauma care within the nursing department. My research is dedicated to improving policies that enhance patient-centred care specifically in trauma centres. I am deeply passionate about the healthcare industry, recognizing the challenge of bridging the gap between academia and industry.

 My academic journey includes pursuing MOAR and Business Administration at SBS, emphasising the strong link between health, industry, and business. As a member of NWBI, I actively contribute to organizing informative events for students, fostering a deeper understanding of the industry, particularly in the healthcare field.

Hadeel Taleb

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Karmern is a first year PhD student under the A*STAR collaboration programme with the University of Manchester, specialising in Breast Cancer Research. She hopes to gain the exposure and experience to move into the pharmaceutical industry, ideally to see more immediate impact from her research.



In her spare time, she enjoys cooking/baking and rock-climbing, as well as a good cup of iced coffee no matter the weather.

Karmern Kan


Katy is a final year PhD student in the Division of Cardiovascular Sciences researching the mechanisms behind reduced blood flow in Alzheimer's Disease. She has an integrated masters in Genetics from the University of Glasgow, during which she researched the effect of temporal changes in maternal glucose during gestational diabetes.

In her free time she enjoys playing competitive netball, running, walking with her family or heading to the pub with friends.

Katy Walsh


Khushi Khare is a second-year undergraduate in Biotechnology at the University of Manchester. She finds her coursework fascinating, especially the hands-on lab work and how specific concepts can be applied in real-life situations.

In her pastime, she likes travelling, exploring new cuisines and writing.

Khushi Khare


Petr is a second-year PhD student based at the University of Manchester. After completing his BSc in Biotechnology, he went to pursue a PhD focusing on the production of Covid-19 antigens in plants in hopes to manufacture a cheaper and more effective version of a Covid-19 vaccine.

As a part of the committee, Petr hopes to organise events making biotech more interesting and approachable to the public.

Outside of the lab, Petr enjoys climbing, skiing, cooking, and travelling.

Petr Brož


Teodora is a fourth-year MSci Medical Biochemistry student based at the University of Manchester whose project is focused on CAR-T cell development for targeted cancer therapy. In addition to immunology research, she is interested in cancer biology, stem cells and diagnostics, and is eager about the crossover of these fields, and the potential of next generation cell-based therapeutics to revolutionize the world. 

As part of the committee, Teodora hopes to bring the industry and academia together and organize events that solidify the relationships between students and industry professionals.


In her spare time, Teodora loves to enjoy new bars and restaurants with friends, travel, read and go for hikes.  

Teodora Malacopol



Magnus is a third-year PhD student at the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology. His project involves studying the unnatural photoactivity of flavin-based enzymes, using both computational chemistry techniques, such as time-dependent density functional theory, and a femtosecond pulsed IR laser. He obtained his masters in Edinburgh, where he achieved a first in Chemistry with industrial experience (Mchem).

As a previous Co-Chair for NWBI, Magnus helped to organise events to connect academics and students with the rapidly expanding biotech industry. 

In his spare time, Magnus enjoys hiking in the Lake District and playing board games.

Magnus Speirs

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Olivia is a fourth-year PhD student at the University of Manchester. Her research is focused on understanding the properties and functions of molecular knots and machines in the field of supramolecular chemistry. Before her PhD, Olivia obtained a First Class Honours in Chemistry MChem from the University of Oxford. 

In her free time, Olivia enjoys playing tennis, watching rugby and playing the saxophone.

Olivia Knapp

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