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Nigel Dyer

In 2007, after 25 years working in the Telecoms industry (working on the same product, System X,for almost all of that time) I took voluntary redundancy from Ericsson, and completed a 4 year MSc/PhD within MOAC before moving on to take up a post doc position in the Systems Biology Centre at Warwick ,moving from one short term contract to the next. Finally in 2022 I took up a permanent position within the Bioinformatics RTP at Warwick.

Life before MOAC provides a little of the background as to how I came to make such a radical career move.

These web pages provide information on my interests in water, my PhD, as well as information on the work I carried out during my 1 year MSc.

The enigma that is water

The Life before MOAC page describes how a long standing interest in vibrational modes led to an interest in the physics and chemistry of water. This led to the presentation of a paper at the 6th conference on the Physics, Biology and Chemistry of water where I explored how the different properties of the two spin isomers of water might help us understand some of the strange properties of water, many of which were covered in other papers presented at this conference.

My interest in water led me to taking a part time position as a Post-doc at Wetsus in the Netherlands where I am working in the Applied Water Physics group where I am investigating dielectric breakdown in water. Ultimately I beleive that there may be some interesting connections between this work, some of the other research being done within this group and the biology that was at the heart of my PhD and subsequent work as a post-doc at the University of Warwick.

My PhD: Informative sequence-based models for fragment distributions in ChIP-seq, RNA-seq and ChIP-chip data

The PhD is centred on trying to improve our ability to predict the locations where proteins, or transcription factors, bind to DNA in order to regulate gene expression. More details.

One of the outcomes of the work is a paper which will be submitted to NAR entitled "Improved modelling of RNA-seq and ChIP-seq bias using multiple alternative nucleotide distributions"

I have placed a set of programs, spreadsheets and sample data onto the web to allow the results in this paper to be reproduced

My initial work has been to look at the different ways of scoring the match between a DNA sequence and the transcription factor consensus sequence.

My PhD: Software development

As with an increasing amount of Biology and Genetics, a significant amount of these work involves mathematical modelling and the initial stages of the PhD involved reconfiguring and updating some of the software systems used within the group. Much of this involves open source software, where the documentation is minimal, and help is often found on other peoples Blogs where they have recorded there experience of using the software.

In turn, I have created a series of web pages which document what I have learnt in the process. Topics covered include:

Installing and building software on Windows PCs:

Installing and building software on Apple MACs

notes on using PERL

Installing and using software within Systems Biology

Creating multiplatform applications

(*) indicates webpages that are restricted to Warwick University members.

My MSc: Mathematical Biology and Biophysical Chemistry

After the first six months of taught modules, including exams which I thought I had left behind me many years ago, I carried out three mini projects, which provided stepping stones to my PhD.

The first two mini-projects were linked, the first being laboratory wet-work in Biological Sciences , and the second being Biophysical Chemistry experimental work using the FtsZ protein produced as part of the first mini-project.

The third mini-project is the Mathematical/Computing based mini project, which was unrelated to the first two projects and led into my PhD.

  • Mini project 3: Modelling and Predicting Transcription Factor Binding Sites (Dr. Sacha Ott)


And finally.. Look at the pictures on the right in the 'also in the news' secton of the following BBC web page: