Desma is a Registered Patent Attorney in the Biotechnology group at FB Rice. Desma undertakes a mix of local and overseas-originating patent prosecution, directly manages a number of overseas patent portfolios for local clients and completes freedom-to-operate work for generic drug companies. Desma has undertaken patent work in a broad and diverse range of areas. These include biologics and biosimilars, agriculture, plant biotech, antibodies, CRISPR, miRNA, virus detection and virus/vaccine production. Desma has also done work on diagnostics, animal technology, cancer and inflammation treatments, hair loss treatments, food and nutritional supplement productions processes, probiotics and methods of producing probiotics.

Desma completed a Graduate Certificate in Research Commercialisation in 2010 at The University of Queensland and a PhD in Molecular and Cell Biology at The University of Queensland School of Pharmacy in 2011. Her research focused on breast cancer, where she investigated the secretory pathway calcium transporters as novel therapeutic targets in molecular subtypes. For this work she received the School of Pharmacy William Harris Prize in Therapeutic Targeting and the Graduate School Dean’s award for Research Higher Degree Excellence.

Before commencing at FB Rice Desma was a Post-Doctoral Researcher at CSIRO where her research involved investigating the genetic link between obesity and colorectal cancer using next generation sequencing techniques. Desma was hired at FB Rice as a Trainee Patent Attorney in late 2013 where she trained to become a Registered Patent Attorney. As part of the process she completed a Masters of Intellectual Property Law at the University of Melbourne in 2016.