Dr Giulia Pergolizzi

Postdoctoral Scientist Molecules from Nature

After training as an organic chemist in Italy, Giulia continued her studies at UEA and King’s College London in the UK and received PhD degree in Pharmacy in 2012.

Since¬†Giulia joined Professor Rob Field’s group at the John Innes Centre as a PDRA in 2013 she has worked on a variety of projects associated with carbohydrate chemistry and biology. To tackle the problem of efficacy of anti-Burkholderia vaccine she worked on preparation of semi-synthetic glycoconjugates based on capsular polysaccharide (CPS) of the bacterium, CPS fragments and several types of carriers including virus-like particles (VLP).

More recently,Giulia  has been involved in a large collaborative research programme between several academic and industrial partners which is aimed at the identification and characterisation of new glycoenzymes with desirable bioactivities for industrial application in diagnostics, nutraceuticals, biofuels, etc.

Thousands of carbohydrate-active enzymes are known to be involved in biosynthesis and metabolism of glycans and glycoconjugates but only limited number of these enzymes found wide-spread industrial applications. Giulia ‘s research focus is on the biochemical characterization of glycoenzymes and investigation of their use in the production of known glycans in a cheaper and greener way, as well as the development of new glycomaterials and their characterisation.

Synthetic organic chemistry and enzymatic synthesis, bioconjugation and biochemical analysis, NMR spectroscopy and mass spectrometry are the main areas of Giulia ‘s research.