Dr Emily J Guggenheim PhD

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Contact details

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Emily Guggenheim is an interdisciplinary scientist whose current research interests include characterization of a variety of environmentally and biomedically relevant nanomaterials, particularly understanding of their uptake, fate and toxicity following human exposure, employing (and developing) a variety of microscopical methodologies combined with automated image processing and analysis.


  • 2016: PhD. “Development of reflectance imaging and analysis methodologies for the investigation of superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles”. Physical Science of Imaging in the Biomedical Sciences Doctoral Training Center (PSIBS DTC), University of Birmingham, UK / Center for Advanced Microscopy and Nikon Imaging Center, Chicago, IL, USA.
  • 2013: MSc. Physical Science of Imaging in the Biomedical Sciences. PSIBS DTC, University of Birmingham, UK.
  • 2012: MSc. Toxicology. School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, UK.
  • 2011: BSc. Biochemistry. School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, UK.


Emily Guggenheim obtained a BSc (Hons.) in Biochemistry from the University of Birmingham (2011) which stimulated her interest in Toxicology and Pharmacology. Emily then continued to study for, and gained with distinction, an MSc in Toxicology at the University of Birmingham. Her MSc was fully funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC). Following the realisation that interdisciplinary approaches offer significant advantages within the field of biological research, Emily then went on to pursue, and obtain with distinction, a second MSc within the interdisciplinary Physical Sciences for Imaging in the Biomedical Sciences (PSIBS) Doctoral Training Centre (DTC), fully funded by the Engineering and Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC). The PSIBS MSc is a challenging course that aims to train graduates from a variety of scientific backgrounds (Computer Sciences, Biological Sciences, Physics, Chemistry) in several key fields, including Computer Science and Image Analysis, Biological Sciences, Physics of Imaging Systems and Chemistry of Imaging Agents, in addition to Intellectual Property Training and Press Release Training. Emily then remained within the PSIBS DTC for her PhD studies, again fully funded by the EPSRC, and successfully defended her interdisciplinary PhD, titled “Development of Reflectance Imaging Methodologies to Investigate Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles”, in June 2017. Emily has since worked as a Research Fellow on two European Union (EU) projects: Framework Programme 7 (FP7) NanoMILE and Horizon2020 (H2020) ACEnano. Within these projects Emily has continued to work within the fields of nanosafety and nanotoxicology using tools such as cell culture, light and electron microscopy and image analysis, but also broadening her skill set to analytical instruments such as ICP-OES, ICP-MS and FFF.

Emily has collaborated extensively with Northwestern University, particularly within the Center for Advanced Microscopy (CAM) and Nikon Imaging Center (NIC) at the Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, Illinios, USA. These collaborations were funded by grants secured from the Wellcome Trust Outward Mobility Institutional Strategic Support Fund (ISSF) and the North American Travel Fund. Since becoming a Research Fellow, a further collaboration was established with the NIC/CAM funded by a Northwestern Operating Support Grant. These collaborations have so far led to two first author publications for Emily, and an application note on MicroscopyU in collaboration with Nikon. Emily has also participated in several international conferences and training schools with a variety of roles including oral presentations, lectures and poster presentations, for more detail see below. Emily has published several research papers in journals such as PLoSOne, NanoImpact and International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, for more detail see below. Emily also studies for her international qualification in Leadership and Management (Level 2).



  • Emily J Guggenheim, Joshua Z Rappoport and Iseult Lynch. Cellular uptake, localization and fate of superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles in cancer cells. Manuscript in preparation.
  • Anastassios Papadiamantis1, Emily J Guggenheim1, Sophie M Briffa, Benjamin Fryer, Marie F Belinga-Desaunay, Isabella Romer, Iseult Lynch and Eugenia Valsami-Jones. “The dissolution behaviour of a library of 37 engineered nanomaterials in simplified fluid analogues.” Manuscript in preparation.
  • Emily J Guggenheim and Joshua Z. Rappoport: “Reflectance imaging for visualization of unlabelled structures using the Nikon A1 and N-SIM.” MicroscopyU/Nikon instruments. Application Note. Reprinted in the Australian Journal for Microscopy.
  • Emily J Guggenheim, Peter Rottgermann, Silvia Milani, Anna Salvati, Maria Dusinska, Christelle Saout, Iseult Lynch and Joachim Radler. “Refining in vitro models for nanomaterial exposure to vells and tissues.” NanoImpact. 10. 121-142.
  • Andrew J Chetwynd. Emily J Guggenheim, Sophie M Briffa, James A Thorn, Iseult Lynch and Eugenia Valsami-Jones. “Current Applications of Capillary Electrophoresis in Nanomaterial Characterization and its Potential to characterise the protein and small molecule corona.” Nanomaterials. 8(2). 99.
  • Susan Dekkers et al. “Multi-omics approaches confirm metal ions mediate the main toxicological pathways of metal bearing nanoparticles in lung epithelial A549 cells”. ES Nano. 5. 1506-1517.


  • Iris Hansjosten et al. “Microscopy-based high-throughput assays enable multi-parametric analysis to assess adverse effects of nanomaterials in various cell lines.” Archive fur Toxikologie. 92(2). 633-649.
  • Emily J Guggenheim, Iseult Lynch and Joshua Z. Rappoport. “Imaging in focus: Reflected light imaging, techniques and applications.” International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology. 83. 65-70.


  • Emily J Guggenheim, Abdullah Khan, Jeremy Pike, Lynne Change, Iseult Lynch, Joshua Z. Rappoport. “Confocal and super-resolution reflectance imaging of metal oxide nanoparticles inside cells.” PloSONE. 10(11).


  • Julie Mazzolini, Ralf Weber, Hseuh-Shih Chen, Abdullah Khan, Emily Guggenheim, Robert Shaw, James Chipman, Mark Viant, Joshua Z. Rappoport. “Protein corona modulates uptake and toxicity of nanoceria via clathrin mediated endocytosis”. The Biological Bulletin, 47, 777-780. 2016.
  • M. Kaur1, Emily J Guggenheim1, Claudio Pulisciano1, S. Akhbar, Rachel M. Kershal, Nikolas J. Hodges, “Cellular accumulation of Cys326-OGG1 protein complexes under conditions of oxidative stress”. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 447 (1),12-18. 1All three authors contributed equally.


  • Rian Griffiths. Joscelyn Sarsby, Emily J. Guggenheim, Josephine Bunch. “Formal Lithium fixation improves direct analysis of lipid in tissues by mass spectrometry”. Analytical Chemistry, 85(15), 7146-7153.


  • 2018: Third Nanosafety Forum for Young Scientists Conference, Malta, 2018. Presentation: “Microscopy methods for assessing the biological effects of engineered nanomaterials”.
  • 2017: NanoGenTools Autumn School: Advanced Training in Understanding the Safety of Nanomaterials. Burgos, ES. Lecture. “Studying NP uptake into cells”.
  • 2017: OpenTox, Asia, 2017. VideoLink Oral Presentation: “Investigation of intracellular metallic nanoparticles”.
  • 2017: 12th International Conference on the Environmental Effects of Nanoparticles and Nanomaterials (ICEENN). Birmingham, UK. Oral Presentation. “Methods for the investigation of intracellular metallic nanoparticles”.
  • 2017: International Colloids and Interface Science Symposium. Manchester, UK. Oral Presentation. “Label-free reflectance methods for the investigation of metallic nanoparticles”.
  • 2017: Microscience Microscopy Congress (MMC) and Electron Microscopy and Analysis Group (EMAG), Manchester, UK. Poster Presentation. “Label free reflectance imaging of intracellular metal oxide nanoparticles”
  • 2016: ITERM and NanoMILE workshop for nanomedicine and contrast agents. Maastricht, NL. Lecture. “Mechanisms of cellular uptake of metal oxide NP”.
  • 2016: Royal Microscopy Society (RMS): Frontiers in Bioimaging, London, UK. Oral Presentation. “Confocal and Superresolution Reflectance Imaging of Intracellular Nanoparticles”.
  • 2015: American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) Annual Meeting, San Diego, CA, USA. Poster Presentation. “Correlative Reflectance Electron Microscopy for Nanoparticle Imaging”.
  • 2015: Quantitative Bioimaging (QBI), Paris, France. Poster Presentation. “Multimodal Imaging and Analysis of Iron Oxide Nanoparticle Uptake”.
  • 2014: Core Technologies for Life Sciences (CTLS), Paris, France. Oral Presentation and Poster. “Multimodal Imaging of Iron Oxide Nanoparticle Uptake”.