Maria was born in Galicia, Spain. She obtained her BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry from the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona in 2015. She then moved to Edinburgh where she did a MSc in Drug Design and Biomedical Sciences at Edinburgh Napier University, where she worked on the development of optical probes targeting the cancer overexpressed protease legumain for imaging applications. Following a short period working in industry as a pharmacokineticist for preclinical testing of drugs, she conducted her PhD studies in Professor Mark Bradley group at the University of Edinburgh working on the synthesis of fluorogenic peptide-based probes for imaging inflammation-related proteases. Maria joined the Ciulli group in January 2023 as a postdoctoral scientist working on the development of the next generation tag-based dregon system “BromoTag” with support from Tocris / Bio-Techne. Outside the lab, she likes to spend time in the mountains, mostly cycling or hiking/running. When indoors, she enjoys reading or watching a good movie.