Dr Louise Sternicki is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Centre for Fragment-Based Design (CFBD) based at Griffith University. She completed a Bachelor of Science (Biomedical Science) at the University of Adelaide, followed by Honours in 2014 and a PhD in 2020, both at The University of Adelaide under the supervision of Professor Grant Booker. Louise began working as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Griffith Institute for Drug Discovery, Griffith University in 2019 with Professor Ron Quinn on an international industry project with Genentech. This focused on using native mass spectrometry (MS) to facilitate drug design.
Louise is using native mass spectrometry for drug discovery efforts. Previously, Louise worked on an international industry collaborative project with Genentech where they used native MS to assist their drug discovery efforts. One outcome was a publication where the team developed a native MS assay for screening PROTACs (molecules that degrade protein targets rather than inhibit them) for complex formation that is required for protein degradation to occur. Currently, Louise is continuing to use native MS to assist drug discovery including for difficult targets (including membrane proteins) and different non-traditional targets as well as to complete fragment-based screens.
Louise is looking forward to being involved in a variety of projects that involve engaging with industry and the ability to collaborate with other researchers. She is also looking forward to the ability to learn from fellow members including through conferences and training opportunities, as well as the chance to network and get to know other member researchers.
During her PhD, Louise discovered native Mass Spectrometry under the mentorship of Associate Professor Tara Pukala. In 2018, during her PhD, Louise took a 6-month leave of absence to travel to the UK, and during this time she completed a 2-month research placement at The University of Manchester with Professor Perdita Barran. Here, she furthered her knowledge and skills in native mass spectrometry and other structural mass spectrometry approaches.
“I enjoyed the research in my Honours a lot more than I thought I would, and also knew that I needed a PhD to further develop skills and knowledge for career progression”, Louise says.
Grants and Awards
- Australian Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Fellowship and Fred Collins Award, 2018 (This funded my Louise’s research placement at The University of Manchester during her PhD)
- John L Young Scholarship during my Honours at The University of Adelaide, 2014
- School of Molecular and Biomedical Science Prize in Level III Microbiology and Immunology, during Bachelor of Biomedical Science at The University of Adelaide, 2013
- The R K Morton Scholarship for Biochemistry III, during Bachelor of Biomedical Science at The University of Adelaide, 2013
- Faculty of Sciences Outstanding Academic Achievement Awards, during Bachelor of Biomedical Science at The University of Adelaide, 2012 and 2013
- The University of Adelaide Principles Scholarship, during Bachelor of Biomedical Science at The University of Adelaide, 2011