Photo of Dr Francesca Palombo

Dr Francesca Palombo

Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Spectroscopy

Email:

Telephone: 01392 726612

Extension: (Streatham) 6612

My research is focused on the development of FTIR, Raman and Brillouin spectroscopy methods for applications to the biomedical sciences. I am particularly interested in the physical and chemical aspects of biological systems at a molecular level, as well their implications in disease. Previously, I developed the application of ATR-FTIR imaging to atherosclerosis in small animal models. I applied both ultrafast OHD-OKE and THz Raman scattering to elucidate the dynamics, structure and interactions in ionic solutions. My PhD was focused on H-bonding properties of octanols from the liquid to supercritical fluid phase using FTIR and Raman spectroscopy.

Visit my team website: http://biospec.uk/

Open PhD position: http://www.exeter.ac.uk/studying/funding/award/?id=2888

Current team members:

  • Noemi Correa (PDRA): Novel Brillouin-Raman microscopy applied to oesophageal cancer
  • Michelle Bailey (PhD): Chemo-mechanics of epithelial tissue in dysplastic Barrett's oesophagus
  • Fahad Aldosari (PhD): Noble metal nanoparticles for SERS applications in biomedicine
  • Rikke Morrish (PhD): FTIR imaging applied to live immune cells in microfluidic devices
  • Pascaline Bouzy (PhD): Novel IR spectroscopic imaging of breast calcifications
  • Michael Hermes (PhD): Rapid high-resolution mid-IR imaging of oesophageal cancers
  • Ryan Edginton (PhD): Biomechanics of protein fibres of the extracellular matrix
  • Louise Clark (PhD): SERS and SESORS for breast cancer diagnosis
  • Beatrice Grist-Perkins, Jordan Hembrow, Sarah Stoyle, Luke Williams (MPhys)
  • Lucy Hawkett, Jessica Hopson (MSci Natural Sciences)

Alumni: Visiting PhDs - Beatrice Gironi (Erasmus+) 2017, Sara Mattana 2016; visiting student - Antoine David 2014; MPhys students - Brooklyn Thirkettle, Gerard Halliday and Benjamin Jones 2015-17; summer vacation bursary - Sarah Stoyle 2016; summer placements - Laurence Mitchell 2017, Thomas Ledgerwood 2017; Imogen Swift 2016.  

Taught modules: 2014-date, Physical Chemistry (NSC2002) and Practical Physics II (PHY2026); 2015-2017: Introduction to Radiation Physics (PAM1014; Module Lead).

Education and Employment

  • 2017-date   Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Spectroscopy, University of Exeter
  • 2013-2016  Lecturer in Biomedical Spectroscopy, University of Exeter
  • 2012-2013  Senior Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of East Anglia
  • 2009-2011  Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Perugia, Italy
  • 2007-2009  Postdoctoral Research Associate, Imperial College London
  • 2003-2007  PhD Physical Chemistry, University of Perugia
  • 1998-2003  MSc (110/110 cum laude) Chemistry, University of Perugia

Funded Research Projects

  • (PI) CRUK/EPSRC Multidisciplinary Award NS/A000063/1, 2017-2021, £499,876
  • (CI; Vice Chair) CA COST Action 'BioBrillouin' CA16124, 2017-2021, €358,000
  • (PI) EPSRC First Grant EP/M028739/1, 2015-2017, £114,916
  • (CI) Wellcome Trust ISSF2 Seed-Corn Round 3, 2016-17, £10,950
  • (PI) Wellcome Trust ISSF2 Seed-Corn Round 2, 2016, £11,480
  • (PI) Small grant for scientific activities, Royal Society of Chemistry, 2016, £2,000
  • (PI) International travel grant, Royal Academy of Engineering, 2007, £700
  • (PI) International travel grant, European Molecular Liquid Group, 2007, €660
  • PhD studentship, Ministry of Education, Universities and Research, Italy, 2003-2006, ca. €39,000

Facilities Usage

  • (PI) LASERLAB EUROPE, LENS002120, 2015, 19 shifts of 9 hours

Invited Presentations

Invited presentations since January 2008:

  • School of Medicine, University of Leeds, TBC
  • 8th IDMRCS conference, Wisla (Poland), 2017
  • School of Physics, Cardiff University, 08/02/2017
  • Nano-spectroscopy and Bio-Imaging conference, Photonex, Coventry, 2016
  • MiFoBio school, Seignosse (France), 2016
  • (x2) SciX conference, Minneapolis (USA), 2016 
  • Department of Bioengineering, Imperial College London, 14/07/2016
  • Workshop on Future Biophotonics Technologies at the Engineering/Physics/Life Sciences Interface, Exeter, 2016
  • Winter School on Biotechnology, University of Perugia (Italy), 2016
  • MERI, Sheffield Hallam University, 18/01/2016
  • School of Chemistry, University of Bristol, 05/06/2015
  • SciX conference, Reno (USA), 2014
  • Health and Medical Research Showcase, University of Exeter, 27/06/2014
  • Workshop on Solvation in Liquids, University of Lille (France), 28/03/2011
  • (x2) University of Catania (Italy), 21-22/02/2008
  • Department of Chemistry, University of Perugia (Italy), 28/01/2008

Contributions to the Community

  • External examiner for the award of PhD degrees at Imperial College London and the University of Perugia, Italy
  • Member of the EPSRC Peer Review College
  • Reviewer for funding bodies including EPSRC, CRUK and the European Commission
  • Reviewer and member of the pool of experts for the EU Horizon 2020 FET-OPEN and RIA call 2016-2017
  • Reviewer for international scientific journals including Advanced Materials, Analyst, Analytical Methods, Applied Spectroscopy, Biomacromolecules, and the Journal of Physical Chemistry

Conference Organisation

  • 13th Martin & Willis Student Prize Meeting and IRDG Meeting 210, University of Exeter, 26-27/08/2015
  • CLIRSPEC Network Conference, University of Exeter, 20-22/04/2015

Outreach

  • RSC ChemNet event, University of Exeter, 14/12/2015
  • Spectroscopy Zone in I'm a Scientist, Get me out of here, 2014
  • "Chemical photography: seeing in a different light", Royal Academy Exhibition Celebrating 350 years of the Royal Society, London Southbank Centre, 25/06-04/07/2010

Memberships

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)
  • Member of the American Chemical Society (ACS)
  • Member of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)
  • Member of the Society for Applied Spectroscopy (SAS)
  • Member of the SAS Publications Committee
  • Member of the UK SAS Committee

Prizes

  • Best undergraduate supervisor, CEMPS, Exeter, 2016-17
  • Best poster at the EMLG/JMLG conference, Sheffield, 03-07/09/2004
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