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Current Group Members

Staff Members

Professor Remzi Becer

Professor (2022 - Present)

Full Profile here.

Dr Gokhan Yilmaz

Assistant Professor (2022 - Present)

He obtained his PhD in Chemistry in 2016 under the guidance of Prof. Remzi Becer at the University of Warwick. Following several years of postdoctoral experience, including positions at Queen Mary University of London in the School of Engineering and Materials Science and at the University of Nottingham in the School of Pharmacy, he returned to Warwick Chemistry to join the ITN BIOMOLMACS Project under the coordination of Remzi Becer.

His research project is primarily focused on the synthesis of precision glycopolymers and their subsequent evaluation for binding affinity with various types of human lectins, with the aim of applying these findings in diverse biological applications. Furthermore, he has a keen interest in developing glyco-based nanoparticles through various synthesis techniques to enhance their applicability in biomedicine.

Dr Ben Drain

Research Technician (2021 - Present)

In 2022, Ben received his PhD from Queen Mary University of London under the supervision of Professor Remzi Becer. His research was a collaboration with Infineum and involved researching poly(2-oxazoline)s and functional architectures thereof such as star and cyclic polymers. In addition, since 2021, he has been a research technician in the group focused on the scale up of target compounds for Infineum.

PhD Students

James Lefley

PhD Student - Year 4

James completed his Bachelors degree at Newcastle University in 2018. After that he enrolled at the University of Warwick and completed his Masters degree in Polymer Chemistry in 2020. During his Masters, James studied and published a review on the macromolecular design and preparation of polymersomes with Prof Remzi Becer. He eventually stayed on with the Becer Group to start an industrially funded PhD with Infineum. James’ research focuses on Poly(oxazoline)-based smart materials, amphiphilic block copolymers, and self-assembly.

Dan MacKinnon

PhD Student - Year 4

Dan completed an integrated Masters degree in Chemistry at the University of York from 2016-2020. In his final year, he completed a research project based on bio-based step-growth polyesters while working for Innospec in Ellesmere Port. In 2020, he started his PhD in the Becer group at the University of Warwick working on sustainable polymers and published a journal article utilizing multicomponent reactions for polyamide synthesis. In his second year, Dan received industrial funding from CreateMe to work on reversible adhesives. Since then, his work has largely focused on designing polymers to meet specific property criteria and utilising reversible chemistries to develop CANs (Covalent Adaptable Networks).

Zivani Varanaraja

PhD Student - Year 4

Zivani completed her BSc in Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Warwick in 2019. She stayed on to achieve her MSc in Chemistry with Scientific Writing, during which she published a review titled “Poly(2-oxazine)s: A comprehensive overview of the polymer structures, physical properties and applications”. In October 2020, Zivani started her PhD in the Becer Group, sponsored by Infineum. Her project is focusing on synthesising 2-oxaoline/2-oxazine based polymers with specific functionality.

Matthew Laurel

PhD Student - Year 4

Matthew completed his MChem degree at the University of Warwick in 2019. He completed an international placement at Chalmers university under the supervision of Prof Gunnar Westman, with his project focusing on modifications of nanocrystalline cellulose. His Master’s project was based on flow oxygen tolerant Cu-RDRP, under the guidance of Prof Dave Haddleton. In 2020, Matthew started his PhD in the Becer Group with his research focused on poly(thiomethacrylates) and their degradability. His main interest is in the field of degradable and dynamic covalent polymer networks, with him attending the EUPOC 2023 conference on Dynamic Polymer Networks in Bertinoro, Italy.

Jonas Becker

PhD Student - Year 4

Jonas graduated from Humboldt University in Berlin, Germany with an MSc degree in 2018. His master thesis was focussed on the synthesis and characterisation of molecular photoswitches. After an industrial internship in Munich, he was employed at SCHOTT Technical Glass Solutions (Jena, Germany), working on silane coatings of glass surfaces by Chemical Vapour Deposition (CVD). In 2020, he joined the group of Prof. Remzi Becer as a PhD candidate and part of the BIOMOLMACS network (MSCA Horizon 2020). His research interests are the effect of chirality on glycopolymer-lectin interactions (by SPR), step-growth polymerisation based on CuAAC, functionalization of poly-(2-oxazoline) scaffolds via click chemistry and the biological recognition of glycopolymers and cells.

Roberto Terracciano

PhD Student - Year 4

Roberto achieved his Master of Science degree in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from the University Federico II of Napoli, Italy. During his master's thesis, he participated in the Erasmus+ program from 2018 to 2019 and was hosted at the University of Nottingham (UK) as a member of Prof. Cameron Alexander’s group. In collaboration with Prof. Robin Shattock at Imperial College London, he focused on the design of charge-reversible polymeric gene delivery vectors and their interaction with saRNA. In September 2020, Roberto embarked on his PhD journey under the guidance of Prof. Remzi Becer. This doctoral research, part of the BIOMOLMACS ITN (MSCA Horizon2020), centers around artificial cell membranes and their innovative applications.

Caity Nutting

PhD Student - Year 1

Caity completed her bachelors degree at the University of Warwick in 2022. She commenced her masters degree in the Becer group investigating cholesterol-conjugated glycans, before transitioning to a PhD position at the start of 2023. Caity's research focuses on glycopolymers with the aim to make novel pharmaceuticals and biomaterials.

Abeer Aljubailah

PhD Student - Year 1

Abeer obtained her BSc and MSc degrees in Chemistry from King Saud University in Saudi Arabia. In Summer 2023, she started her PhD in the Becer group. Abeer is conducting her PhD research project in the field of sustainable polymers.

Master Students


MRes (2022-23)

Jichuan Chen

MSc (2022-23)

Sharon Korir

MSc (2023-Present)

Marios Christodoulides

MSc (2023-Present)

Ruvimbo Gadaga

MChem (2023-Present)

Ruvimbo is completing her Masters undergraduate degree at the University of Warwick. Her work focuses on the incorporation of degradable thioester linkages into conventional polymers for enhanced recyclability.

Undergraduate Students

Magda Godzina

Undergraduate Researcher - Year 2 Undergraduate (2023)

Magda is completing her undergraduate degree at the University of Warwick. She conducted a URSS project over the summer focusing on copolymerising poly(2-oxazolines) with polylactides as tools to control their phase separation in artificial cells. Her current research focuses on synthesising novel baroplastic materials for sustainable closed-loop polymer recycling.

Aydarus Wardhere

URSS - Year 2 Undergraduate (2023)

Aydarus is completing his undergraduate degree at the University of Warwick. His research is focused on poly(2-oxazoline) based baroplastics with applications in plastic recycling.