Dr Dominic Lowen is a cellular biologist specialising in cancer biology. Dominic joined the team at Inaphaea BioLabs at its inception in February this year.
In the third instalment of our ‘meet the team’ series for Inaphaea BioLabs, we discover a little more about Dominic Lowen, his career and background and how he feels he can help with the growth of this new start-up.
How would you describe your education/career history?
I had, and still do have, a deep curiosity for how things work. I remember, as a child, taking a laptop to pieces to explore the mechanics of it. My dad was able to put it back together again!
After schooling in Leicester, I chose University of Leeds for my degree course. As one of the leading life sciences faculties, it felt like a good fit for me. I completed a BSc and MSc degree in Biochemistry and Bioscience, and during my MSc, I was awarded a PhD scholarship to investigate the role of histone deacetylases in blood cancers.
My research for my PhD involved investigating cancer signalling pathways specifically related to myeloproliferative neoplasms. Investigations led me to discover that members of the histone deacetylases family were dysregulated in polycythaemia vera and essential thrombocythemia. The methods by which I investigated the dysregulation of signalling pathways translates to what we are now doing at Inaphaea.
After completing my PhD, I was employed at a Nottingham-based CRO as a bioassay development scientist where I supported multiple clients over a wide range of therapeutic areas through the optimisation of bespoke cell-based assays for preclinical drug discovery.
What does your role at Inaphaea involve?
As the Senior Scientist here at Inaphaea, I’ve been heavily involved in helping to set up the laboratory and establishing the foundations for growth. I deal with both external clients and in-house projects and cell-based assays, and, more recently, I’ve been helping to integrate the newly acquired assets from Imagen Therapeutics.
Which areas of science interest you?
I’m keen to be involved in signalling pathways in cancer.
I’ve also previously been involved in using CRISPR-cas9, a technique for altering DNA and gene expression, which again, appeals to me greatly, so I look forward to using this more in the future.
What you’re most looking forward to?
Working with a start-up, changes occur constantly and in real time, so being open and reactive to that is key.
How will you apply your skills to help Inaphaea grow and develop?
I believe that by applying what I’ve learnt in developing assays for both client and in-house requirements is a natural fit for Inaphaea and one that will progress the growth of the company in helping it to service our clients.
With regards my own career path, I’m keen to focus on learning new techniques and becoming the Principal Scientist which will see me more involved with lab work and applying such techniques.
How would you encourage others to follow your lead?
I’d encourage anyone to embrace their passion. If you enjoy science, back yourself. It’s a very interesting and rewarding career.
Find out more about Dominic and the Inaphaea team here.