Peak Proteins welcomes Richard Mott who joins us as a Business Development Associate working with our Head of Scientific Business Development, Dr Hazel Weir.
Richard has worked in the world of protein science for many years and already knows some members of the team at Peak Proteins well. He even shared a flat with Margaret Veldman-Jones during the sandwich year of her degree at Usselland in Deventer, The Netherlands. “Richard was always the chauffeur and was very patient because I was often late leaving work. We had great fun though and enjoyed swapping English and Dutch sayings”, reminisced Margaret.
Graduating from the University of Bristol with a BSc in Biochemistry, Richard joined AstraZeneca at Alderley Park and worked on over 60 cancer and inflammatory disease drug discovery projects as a Senior Research Scientist in the Protein Engineering Group. This included a 6-month secondment to Södertälje in Stockholm, Sweden as an ambassador following the merger of Swedish Astra AB and the British Zeneca Group. “It was a great opportunity to discover how the different protein engineering groups worked and to learn from each other”, commented Richard. Richard also spent some time in the Microbial Fermentation Group producing recombinant E. coli for the company.
After studying for a MSc in Renewable Energy Systems Technology at Loughborough University, Richard changed career direction. Still using his experience and knowledge in molecular biology, protein science and fermentation, he worked for Biohydrogen Ltd, a spin-out company from the University of Sheffield. Biohydrogen Ltd was developing a low carbon, renewable technology by using bacteria to make hydrogen from industrial waste sugar and biomass. Metabolic engineering was needed to increase the low efficiency of the conversion but unfortunately the company ran out of funds before the work could be successfully completed.
Richard moved to the manufacturing site of animal health company Elanco (formerly a division of Eli Lilly) at Speke in Liverpool. Working as a Technical Lead Scientist, he was tasked to take research projects through pilot scale to manufacturing production. This difference in scale was massive from 20 litre bench apparatus to thousands of litres fermentation plant equipment. Richard added, “Although ensuring the process was simplified and as cost effective as possible was challenging, I enjoy trouble shooting and problem solving. Involving governing authorities to ensure the products meet the stringent regulatory requirements made the work varied and interesting.”
Richard continued, “I have always enjoyed research. I know the team at Peak Proteins and they are a dedicated group of protein scientists. I am very much looking forward to be part of a small company again.”
Hazel added, “We are all looking forward to Richard joining us. His experience of protein science, biopharmaceutical manufacturing and working internationally will make him a great asset to the team”.