Photo of Miss Zoe Bright

Miss Zoe Bright



I am a PhD Mathematics student working on Stress and Epilepsy: the role of the HPA axis in modulating brain network dynamics, supervised by Professor John Terry and Dr Jamie Walker. I am based in the Living Systems Institute (LSI) on Streatham Campus with and funded by the EPSRC Centre for Predictive Modelling in Healthcare (


In 2015, I graduated from Oxford Brookes University with a BSc (Hons) Mathematics degree where I started to explore biological applications of mathematics. In my third year, my dissertation focused on knot theory where I researched the applications to biology, namely DNA topology. I attended and participated in the Tomorrow’s Mathematicians Today Conference 2015 hosted at the University of York. Here, I presented my research into DNA topology, in which I was one of six students nominated for the GCHQ award.

After my experience at the University of York, I took the opportunity to study an MSc in Advanced Mathematical Biology. For more information, see here: My main focus here was mathematical modelling in dynamical biological systems. This led to my involvement in Professor Paul Kaye's research group in the Centre for Immunology and Infection researching the subtropical disease Leishmaniasis for my summer placement project, supervised by Dr Jon Pitchford. For more information on the CII, see here: Working in a research group that is making use of applied mathematics motivated my decision to go into further research and join Exeter's epilepsy group.

In academia, I'm particularly interested in human biology and mathematics. In the latter, my passions lie in:

  • dynamical systems,
  • geometry,
  • stochastic processes,
  • biological and soft matter.


Outside of the world of academia, I take interest in swimming, trampolining, acrobatics, tennis, yoga and kickboxing. I love to write for leisure and have previously taken up art therapy. I've been donating blood since I was 17. I'm hopeful to see more women involved in science, particularly mathematics, in the future!