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James Dunford

Senior Research Associate

  • Departmental Health and Safety Officer
  • Senior Radiation Protection officer

My first degree was in Biochemistry, which I completed in Sheffield.  I then moved to the Dept. of Human Metabolism and Clinical Biochemistry at the Hallamshire hospital in Sheffield to complete my PhD, which was on the protein kinases involved in Interleukin 1 signal transduction.  I changed direction a little and spent almost 4 years at the University of Sunderland as a Molecular Gerontologist, investigating changes in gene expression associated with the ageing process.  It was after this that I became interested in bone biology, and I had the opportunity to move to the Bone Group at Aberdeen University to work on the mechanism of action of the nitrogen containing bisphosphonates (N-BP), which are the major class of compounds used to treat disease characterised by loss of bone.  This work involved the characterisation of the molecular target of the N-BP, the mevalonate pathway enzyme Farnesyl Pyrophosphate Synthase, and kindled my current interest in protein biochemistry. 

In 2005 I moved to Oxford to the Institute for Musculoskeletal Sciences at the Botnar Research Centre, to work with Prof Graham Russell and Prof Udo Oppermann of the SGC and have been working here ever since.