Shairbanu Ashra [BSc(Hons) Medical Biochemistry, 2004] works in the Protein & Nucleic Acid Chemistry Laboratory at the University of Leicester.
As she explained in her presentation, contemporary science needs a variety of specialist support services which researchers don’t need in their own team, but need to be able to draw upon when needed. One such service involves analysis of protein samples to see what they contain. Mass Spectrometry is one way to achieve this. It can reveal important and interesting new interactions (as well as sometimes revealing that someone has accidentally got their sample contaminated with a standard lab protein – embarrassing, but good to know if it saves months of labour on the wrong thing!)