Clare Harding

Getting nervous about evictions!

Favourite Thing: Seeing something new that no one in the world has ever seen.



1998 – 2004 Queen Anne High School, Dunfermline, 2005 – 2008 Durham University, 2008 – 2012 Imperial College London


PhD in Microbiology (2012), MRes in Molecular basis of Infection (2009), BSc in Biomedical Science (2008), Advanced Highers: Chemistry (B), Computing (B), Highers: Chemistry (B), Biology (A), Computing (B), English (B), Maths (B)

Work History:

Apart from science I have worked in pubs, cafes, as a camp councellor in New York, as a fundraiser and as a teacher

Current Job:

Reseach fellow at Glasgow University


Glasgow University

Me and my work

I am interested in a tiny parasite which lives in our bodies and how it grows and makes us sick.

The parasite I work on is called Toxoplasma gondii, although it’s not very dangerous to us, it is quite similar to the parasite that causes Malaria which infects about 200 million people and kills about 600,000 people every year. Both of these parasites need to live inside human cells in order to grow.

I’m interested in how the parasite is able to force itself into human cells and how it changes the human cell to¬† help it survive.

My Typical Day

My favorite thing is to use microscopes to look at genetically modified, glowing parasites to try to understand how they work

What I'd do with the money

Fund crafty critters and help people make cuddly parasites!

My Interview

How would you describe yourself in 3 words?

Motivated, curious, short

Who is your favourite singer or band?

Mumford and Sons

What's your favourite food?

Probably curry

What is the most fun thing you've done?

Watching the sunrise from the top of a Mayan pyramid and skydiving

What did you want to be after you left school?

I couldn’t decide if I wanted to be a teacher or work abroad, now I get to do both!

Were you ever in trouble at school?

Not really, I did get in trouble for missing my classes on the last day of school once

What was your favourite subject at school?

Art (but I was never very good) and biology of course!

What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?

I like telling people about my work so my best thing was giving a lecture to about 100 school pupils

What or who inspired you to become a scientist?

If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?

I would love to work for a charity like the red cross

If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!

Tell us a joke.

Other stuff

Work photos:

myimage2 myimage3