Dr Lewis MacKenzie is a biomedical physicist and multi-award winning science communicator.
Lewis specalises in optics, imaging, and spectroscopy for biological applications. He currently works at Durham University as a post-doctoral research associate in the Department of Chemistry (in the group of Dr Robert Pal), where he develops advanced microscopy techniques to measure circularly-polarized light emitted from compounds used as biosensors and imaging probes.
Previously Lewis worked as a Research Fellow in the BioNanotechnology (Millner) Group at the University of Leeds (UK), where he researched upconversion nanoparticle-based biosensors for making faster, next-generation blood tests.
Lewis originally studied Physics and Astronomy before undertaking his PhD in optical biomedical imaging at within the Imaging Concepts Group at the University of Glasgow (UK), where he developed technologies and applications for non-invasive imaging of blood oxygen levels.
Outside the lab, Lewis is a keen science communicator, and has won multiple science communication awards.
Find Lewis online:
featured BLOG POSTS
Why 2 year degrees will be a disaster for students and staff in research-intensive subjects
I wrote a guest blog for Errant Science Clutter, all about the challenges faced by early career researchers when applying for postdoctoral fellowships. Words are by me, cartoons are by Errant Science, and fellowship frustrations are shared by all.
I paid £10 to get my name laser-etched onto an incredibly powerful spinning disk robot. Best £10 I've ever spent!
Recently I gave a 15 minute talk about 'What helps or hinders science communication by early career researchers?' at Re:Con Event in Edinburgh. This post includes a video of my talk and my presentation slides.
As a biophysicist in a biochemistry lab, I'm often learning new skills. To my surprise, recently I had to learn how to grow genetically modified bacteria to produce an artificial binding protein called an 'Affimer'. This blog post details nearly a whole week in the lab as I try to make these Affimers for the first time!
Writing a scientific paper is pretty challenging. But there are also a lot of ancillary things to do to ensure that people can access a free-version of your paper, and so that your funders/institutions have a version for them to track impact, and so that your paper gets some publicity! There is so much to keep track of, that I decided to come up with this helpful check-list! I hope others find it helpful.
ErrantScience.com made a comic abstract for one of my papers!
How to optimise scientific figures for colour blindness with a handy example tested by using a colour blindness simulator
I love listening to podcasts and I love science. Here is a big list of science podcasts that I’m currently aware of. This list aims to be eventually comprehensive, so if you know of some of science podcasts I’ve undoubtedly missed, then please email me on L.Mackenzie1@Leeds.ac.uk or leave a comment to let me know.
I was recently inspired to build a very fun object/maths sculpture known as a "Hexastix". This strange object is a curious assembly of 72 pencils held together with only 8 rubber bands! Hexastix are easy to make, and lots of fun to put together. Plus, all the supplies I needed for it were found on the high street for under £5 in total!