Personal profile

Research interests

Sofia Pascu is Professor of Bioinorganic and Materials Chemistry since 1 December 2016.

She leads an interdisciplinary research group that focusses on the development and applications of new experimental techniques (synthetic and spectroscopic) to assemble and probe new functional materials for biosensing, molecular imaging of living cells, drug delivery, as well as for sustainable chemistry.

Professor Pascu has been awarded an ERC Consolidator Grant (ca.€1.88M, ERC-CoG-2013) to lead the project 'O2SENSE' Oxygen Sensing with Multimodality Imaging Probes (Sept 2014 - Feb 2020) and she was a holder of a Royal Society University Research Fellowship over ten years, at Oxford and Bath Universities (2005-2015).

The S.I.P Research group is formed by four PhD students, one Research Associate (2020 - 2021) and several undergraduate research students (MRes/MChem/BSc/Erasmus). Our research involves working at the interface between organic, physical, inorganic and supramolecular chemistries, towards applications in: sustainable chemistry (Fischer Tropsch catalysis, CO2 storage/conversion, dye-sensitised solar cells), metals in medicine and nanomedicine, and multimodal molecular imaging (optical/Positron Emission Tomography).

New materials, including functional Single Walled Carbon Nanotubes, graphene and graphene oxides and core-shell nanoparticles are synthesised and characterised in the group using optical, NMR, EPR and Raman spectroscopies, multiphoton confocal fluorescence imaging, synchrotron X-ray diffraction techniques, AFM, SEM and HRTEM techniques.

To date, research in the Pascu group was funded by the ERC, FP7 MC ITN ‘PROSENSE’, Royal Society, EPSRC, BBSRC, BP and GSK Case awards, MRC, Innovate UK (TSB, jointly with Abcam), STFC, University of Bath and Nikon Bioimaging UK Ltd.

For a full list of my published work please see: ResearcherID


  • 1997 First class MSc in Chemistry, Babes-Bolyai University of Cluj-Napoca, Romania.
  • 1997-1998 FCO/British Chevening Scholarship, St Catherine’s College Oxford.
  • 1998-2002 Devorguilla Scholarship, Balliol College, Oxford
  • July 2001: Ph.D. in Main Group Organometallic Chemistry, Cluj-Napoca, Romania (Supervisor: Professor Ionel Haiduc. Joint project with Dr Bryan Sowerby, funded by British Council, University of Nottingham)
  • March 2004: D.Phil. in Transition Metal Catalysis (Supervisor: Professor Malcolm L. H. Green FRS)
  • 2002-2003 Research Associate in homogeneous Fischer Tropsch chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory, Oxford University, with Professor Malcolm L.H. Green FRS.
  • 2003-2005 Research Associate in Supramolecular Chemistry, Chemistry Department, Cambridge University with Professor Jeremy K. M. Sanders FRS and Professor Andrew Holmes FRS
  • 2005-2007 Draper’s Company Research Fellowship, St Anne’s College Oxford and MA(oxon) by incorporation.
  • 2005-2015 Royal Society URF (Oxford University, 2005-2007 and Bath University, 2007-2015).
  • October 2010: Royal Society URF and Lecturer, University of Bath.
  • November 2013: Promoted to Reader, University of Bath
  • 1 September 2014 - 30 August 2019: ERC Consolidator Grantee (ERC-CoG-2013, O2SENSE Research Programme)
  • November 2016: Promoted to a personal Chair in Bioinorganic and Materials Chemistry. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy

Education/Academic qualification

Inorganic Chemistry, Doctor of Philosophy, University of Oxford


  • Inorganic chemistry
  • Nanotechnology
  • Coordination chemistry
  • Supramolecular Chemistry
  • Homogeneous catalysis
  • Materials
  • Optical Imaging
  • Sustainable Chemistry
  • Molecular Recognition
  • Radiochemistry
  • Metal complexes
  • medicinal chemistry
  • peptides chemistry
  • Metals in medicine
  • nanomaterials
  • nanomedicine
  • main group chemistry
  • transition metals chemistry
  • spectroscopy


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