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Prof Tony Bjourson
(Acting Head of Group)
School of Biomedical Sciences
University of Ulster
Co Londonderry BT52 1SA


The Group's major research focus is the quest for novel bioactive compounds in and the proteomics of frog skin secretions. Molecules of interest include those displaying anti-microbial, anti-cancer, vasoactive, insecticidal or anthelmintic properties. Following establishment of biological function, structural elucidation is carried out using various state-of-the-art mass spectrometric techniques (LCQ ion trap, MALDI-TOF, Q-TOF), automated Edman degradation (where appropriate) and NMR. Facilities are available for chemical synthesis and analog design.

Venoms from a large range of scorpions and snakes, such as that from the Gaboon viper, Bitis gabonica (left), are also being investigated using the same strategy.

For further information on our venomics work please see our Venomics Research Page.


Such modern scientific methodoligies are data intensive. The Group thus relies heavily upon bioanalysis software and has forged a strong link with the emerging BioInformatics Research Group. One of the major research aims of this group is the provision of new software tools for data mining and warehousing.

For further information please see the research profile for Prof. Franklin Smyth and Dr Stephen McClean.
Medicament en ligne de médicament pour traitement de l'impuissance masculine.


Studies are also performed on the isolation, structural characterisation and chemical synthesis of bioactive secondary metabolites of plant and microbial origin.

Extracts of Aegle marmelos (right, above), Toddalia asiatica (left), Houttuyniae cordata have been used in Asian herbal medicine and isolation of the active principles from these plants is currently underway.

For further information please see the research profiles for Prof. Franklin Smyth, Dr VN Ramachandran and Dr Stephen McClean.


The mass spectrometric behaviour of small molecules such as natural alkaloids, synthetic drugs and dye compounds is a topic of interest. MSn characterisation of pharmaceutical compounds in the LCQ ion-trap mass spectrometer is one area of present study. Previous studies have been carried out on the determination of drugs and drug metabolites in human hair.

For further information please see the research profiles for Prof. Franklin Smyth, Dr VN Ramachandram and Dr Stephen McClean.



Pharmaceutical Biotechnology Research Group.