Dr Tala Ishola
Following her undergraduate degree (BSc (Hons) Biochemistry), Tala joined Argenta Discovery (a respiratory-focused pharmaceutical Research and Development company) as a research scientist from 2007 to 2013.
Her experience in drug discovery ranges from gene targeting through to phase one studies in research of treatments to relieve inflammation in asthma and COPD. Her work included target validation, development of cell-free and cell-based assays (in-vitro and ex-vivo binding and functional assays), and high throughput screening of chemical compounds for biological activity using robotics.
She returned to university to read for a PhD in Cellular and Molecular Biology at the Open University under the supervision of Dr. Martin Bootman (funded by the OU and KU Leuven, Belgium) from 2013 to 2018.
Her thesis aimed at understanding the spatial and temporal characteristics of Ca2+ signals that control autophagy in mammalian cells, and to characterise sources of Ca2+ that lead to the generation of these signals (cytosolic and mitochondrial Ca2+ signals). Autophagy is a process of degradation of cellular components, and is important for homeostasis and cell survival, and has been associated with pathological disorders such as cancers and neurological disorders.
Following her PhD and maternity leave, she joined Birmingham City University in January 2020.