Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Of Chemical Physics and Nuclear magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR): "Learning a new technique is like learning a language"

Of Chemical Physics and Nuclear magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR): "Learning a new technique is like learning a language"


The CAPREx Postdoctoral fellowship programme came up at the time in my research development where I was searching for a new expertise. With my background in Developmental Biochemistry and now working on Natural Product Chemistry, I needed to learn how to determine the structures of compounds.
So I arrived in Cambridge in Spring time when the city is most lively.  I came in from a visit to the ETH-Zurich where I did some work on Mycobacterial Proteomics using Mass Spectrometry. 

Working with Dr. Finian Leeper has been excellent. Learning a new technique is indeed like learning a language. Luckily for me, the Department of Chemistry in Cambridge has been the home of NMR applications development (see my second post for me details) and so many excellent textbooks have been written by former and current faculty members on NMR techniques.  I spent a lot of time reading up the basic principles of NMR from a book by Dudley Williams and Ian Fleming. Dr. Leeper then took me through hands-on spectral analysis using real data.

I completed my study in Cambridge with a lot of excitement about my newly acquired language. This not only adds a major intellectual latitude to my research but also creates new opportunities to train others. As an aside, my pursuit of Chemical Physics drew me into Cosmology as the principles in both field mirror each other. And so I have acquired as many books on Cosmology as I did for NMR. I will encourage my colleague fellows and future fellows to strongly consider using their fellowship time in Cambridge to acquire something completely different from their past experiences, especially as Cambridge boast of world experts in almost all area of academic disciplines. I hope to continue to expand on my collaborations with Dr. Leeper in this exciting field of drug discovery for infectious diseases.


2 comments:

  1. More grease bro.... I hope 2015 comes with more exciting possibilities.... cheers!

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  2. Thanks Kwame. We do our bit. Cheers

    ReplyDelete