Tom Read


  • 2009 – Present PhD, The Diagnosis of Interstitial Lung Disease using Multi-analyte Particle Plasmon Technology, University of Exeter
  • 2008-2009 MSc Biotechnology and Enterprise, University of Exeter
  • 2005-2008 BSc Biological and Medicinal Chemistry, University of Exeter

PhD Project

Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) refers to a group of lung diseases affecting the interstitium (the tissue and space around the air sacs of the lungs). This includes COPD, acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and asthma to name but a few. At present COPD is the fourth leading cause of death in the world, but by 2030 it is expected to be the third.

In collaboration with Pfizer I plan to identify appropriate biomarkers for ILD, and in particular COPD, these biomarkers can then be used to diagnose or monitor the severity of COPD and other ILD’s. Some biomarkers for COPD have been include Surfactant Protein A and D, (SP-A, SP-D). An array chip can be designed with these markers along with control spots and any other potential biomarkers found.

My long term objective is to use the array reader technology (LINK) to perform parallel multi-analyte analysis firstly in PBS and the in both bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and blood serum, with the potential of clinically validating the proposed chip.

Firstly work must be done on each individual biomarker to discover its functions as use as a successful biomarker. This will include an Immunokinetic assay for each analyte so for each of the markers all of the binding kinetics can be modelled. Any issues with non-specific binding or problems with detection limits must also be addressed.

Alongside the development of a diagnostic chip the lung proteome is being reviewed to help with the above as the assay will be much more problematic when real samples are used with much more background protein available for interaction.

Tom Read

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