Imperial College London

Prestigious early career prize won by Life Sciences lecturer

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Early Career Prize

Structure of a bacterial conjugative pilus connecting two bacterial cells during DNA transfer.

Dr Tiago Dias da Costa of Life Sciences has been awarded the Biological Structures Group (BSG) early Career Prize.

The prestigious prize, given by the British Crystallographic Association (BCA), is an individual award which Dr Costa has won for his notable scientific contributions to the field of structural biology.

The BSG awards the prize to an individual whose work has had an impact on crystallography in particular and who has recently obtained a personal fellowship, a lectureship or equivalent.

Dr Tiago CostaThe award is presented at the BCA Spring Meeting and the recipient gives a prize lecture at that meeting. Dr Costa has receives the award for his work around the study of bacterial secretion systems involved in the transfer and proliferation of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) between bacteria. 

"I feel immense pleasure and honour to have received this recognition for my research career, but it is equally important to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of everyone in my lab who contributed to this achievement." Dr Tiago Costa




Using cryo-electron microscopy, Dr. Costa's group has made several landmark discoveries related to the molecular structure of bacterial nanomachines, known as Type IV Secretion Systems, that are involved in the transport of multi-drug resistance plasmids through the process of bacterial conjugation. The structural definition of this mechanism will pave the way for the design of small molecule inhibitors to combat the spread of antimicrobial resistance. 

Cryo-EM map of the outer-membrane core complex from a bacterial Type IV Secretion System.
Cryo-EM map of the outer-membrane core complex from a bacterial Type IV Secretion System.

Dr Costa said: ‘I feel immense pleasure and honour to have received this recognition for my research career, but it is equally important to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of everyone in my lab who contributed to this achievement’.

The prize will be awarded on 5 April 2023 at the Society's spring meeting on 3-6 April, where Dr Costa will also deliver his lecture.

Reporter

Emily Govan

Emily Govan
Department of Life Sciences