Today, we're delighted to introduce Leila Kashefi, our Senior Electroanalytical Development Scientist. Leila conducts biosensor and assay development research on both internal and external projects as well as project management and supervision of a multidisciplinary team.
Q: Where are you from and what is your professional background?
LK: I was born and raised in Iran. I earned a B.Sc. in Pure Chemistry, followed by an M.Sc. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Isfahan (Iran). After that, in July 2013, I received my PhD in analytical chemistry from the University of Isfahan and Linkoping University (Sweden). Upon graduation, I worked as a lecturer at Islamic Azad University for a couple of years. Although I simply relish teaching, it would not satisfy my insatiable desire to contribute to the body of knowledge and advance science in my own discipline. I’ve always had a lifelong passion for research and developing biosensing systems for diagnostic applications that can address today's diagnostic challenges. As a result, this passion led me to research-based fields once more, this time in South Korea. I got a job in Seoul and stayed there for nearly 6 years, and I gained invaluable experience in biosensing, nanomaterials, and microfluidics, along with molecular biology. My tremendous desire to develop practical electrochemical biosensing systems eventually paved the way for me to join Integrated Graphene last summer, where I could indeed delve deeply into cutting-edge technologies to develop biosensing systems for diagnostic applications.
Q: What does a day on the job look like for you?
LK: As a scientist, my typical day starts with reviewing the previous day's results and dealing with any issues that have arisen. My daily routine also includes planning meetings and daily experiments, conducting electrochemical experiments, writing day-to-day reports, and sharing my research findings with other scientists and colleagues. Another aspect of my job is to set up the lab's equipment and instrumentation. Another part of my everyday routine is to look into the literature to stay updated in the field. Overall, Integrated Graphene provides a diverse and collaborative work environment with plenty of opportunities for creativity and innovation.
Q: What are you most looking forward to in 2022?
LK: Our current projects are primarily focused on the development of a wide range of Gii-sens+® electrodes for use in diagnostics. We truly hope to broaden our Gii-sens+ product range on the market in 2022 to assist medical diagnostics designers in leveraging graphene's superior sensory properties through surface modification, making recognition element immobilisation more straightforward. Furthermore, Gii-Sens+ can be broadly utilised to address current challenges in a variety of fields, including environmental monitoring, industrial manufacturing, and food production. It is a unique opportunity for me to apply my knowledge to projects from beginning to end and ultimately see the fruits of my labour.
Q: How do you see graphene changing the world?
LK: Owing to its extraordinary capabilities, graphene is expected to be the material that transforms the world in the not-too-distant future. Graphene has received noteworthy attention in an extensive range of applications, including rechargeable batteries, polymers, textiles, construction, and, most recently, healthcare. Graphene has a large specific surface area due to its honeycomb-like 2D structure, which makes it more appropriate for healthcare applications. Additionally, it has demonstrated a strong ability to be involved in diagnostics, tissue engineering, drug delivery, sensors, and infection control domains in the biomedical sector. Apart from that, it has the potential to play a significant role in the prevention, detection, and treatment of a wide range of health issues.
Moreover, scientists hope to develop more efficient batteries that are small enough to be sewn into clothes or even the skin! Consider charging your electronic device in seconds or an electric car in minutes! Graphene’s unique molecular structure makes it one of the smallest and, at the same time, most beneficial filters. Researchers hope to develop a promising method of purifying seawater into drinking water using graphene. This could offer clean drinking water to millions of people worldwide while also saving lives.
Thank you for the insight, Leila!
Stay tuned for more meet the team interviews.
If you have a project you would like to discuss with Leila or one of her colleagues, then please get in touch today.