I am from Bulgaria and I did my MPhys Physics degree in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Manchester in the UK. My degree was mainly focused on experimental physics but I also learned a lot about computational methods. During my masters project I was working on simulating molecular dynamics and small angle neutron scattering of proteins. The aim of this project was to develop a combined method to study structure and dynamics of proteins using approaches from experimental and computational biophysics, using the GROMACS and SasView softwares.
Although my Masters project was on the boundary between experimental and computational biophysics, throughout my degree I developed interest in biophotonics and in general using light to study living matter.
In my PhD project, I am working on investigating the mechanisms of enzyme diffusion, in particular enhanced enzyme diffusivity. I am using optical tweezers to characterise enzymes and to quantify the conformational changes they undergo in the presence and absence of substrate. I will also be using mass photometry to look at how the diffusion coefficient of enzymes changes when substrate is present in solution. The advantage that both methods offer for the investigation of enzyme diffusivity is that they do not require fluorescent labelling.
In my time outside the lab, I enjoy climbing and bouldering, as well as hiking and just generally being outside. I also like visiting different galleries and museums and attending various types of cultural events.