News

Mahima Swamy Portrait

Dr. Mahima Swamy from the MRC PPU was awarded tenure last month and has also been successful in obtaining £560,000 from the Wellcome Trust as a 2-year extension to her Henry Dale Fellowship. Her research explores how immune cells resident in the gut respond to infection and protect the gut from disease.

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The Medical Research Council has invested £200,000 in a new national network which will help scientists overcome barriers to working in interdisciplinary science

X-Net has been formed to bring together researchers spanning all career stages in science, technology, engineering and mathematics to facilitate the sharing of expertise and knowledge among its members.

By connecting MRC Unit researchers with each other it will harness their experiences of crossing disciplines – in particular from STEM to biomedical and from biomedical to computational.

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Louise-Kristine Nielsen was awarded the prestigious Sir James Black Award for setting up workflows for analysing archival fixed clinical human tissue samples from the gut by mass-spectrometry during her Honours’ project in Esther Sammler’s lab in the MRC PPU. Additionally, she was recognized with prices for graduating as the best A-grade Honours student in both Biomedical and Neurosciences. The photo shows Louise-Kristine on the day of her graduation and prize giving ceremony in front of the portrait of Sir James Black in the James Black Centre at the School of Life Sciences, University of Dundee.

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Researchers from Adrien Rousseau’s lab in the MRC Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit at the University of Dundee, Scotland, have identified mechanisms contributing to the stress-induced increase in proteasome abundance using yeast. This new study is now published in Nature Cell Biology.

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Marc van Grieken, chair of the Dundee Research Interest Group (DRIG) gives powerful introduction to Randy Shekman’s public lecture: Parkinson’s disease: up, close and personal while Brendan Hawdon, DRIG secretary, leads lively Q&A session in 2022. A recording of Randy Shekman’s talk is available here.

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We are delighted that Jin Rui (Amos) Liang has opened his laboratory in the MRC PPU. Amos intends to identify and characterise other novel factors that regulate ERphagy. He will also explore the physiological roles of ERphagy and investigate how ERphagy is disrupted in diseases such as cancer. His laboratory will exploit state-of-the-art CRISPR-based gene editing and genome-wide screening technology, fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), mass spectrometry, fluorescence microscopy, and biochemical studies to interrogate ERphagy in different cell types.  

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The EMBO Workshop entitled “Reversible phosphorylation, signal integration and drug discovery” concluded today in Vouliagmeni, near Athens, Greece  with a special lecture to mark the seminal contributions made by Tricia Cohen to the field of Protein Phosphatases. The lecture, sponsored by the International Union of Biochemistry (IUBMB), was given by Alexandra Newton of the University of California at San Diego and entitled “Protein kinase C emerging from quarantine: Phosphate as a safety switch”.

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Philip Cohen Portrait

The organisation Research.com recently published a list of the scientists working in the fields of Biology and Biochemistry with the highest Hirsch (H) Factors https://research.com/scientists-rankings/biology-and-biochemistry/gb.

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Dr Xingui Liu has been awarded a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellowship to undertake research in the lab of Professor Alessio Ciulli in the newly established Centre for Targeted Protein Degradation (CeTPD). The project is in collaboration with Professor Dario Alessi from the MRC Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit and a Japanese pharmaceutical company. Alessio Ciulli, Director of the CeTPD stated: ”I congratulate Xingui for securing a highly competitive Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellowship. In the just >1 year that she has been with us at Dundee, she has made tremendous strides on developing degrader molecules for a tough kinase target.

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A delegation from National Innovation Centre (Nepal) led by its Chairperson Dr. Mahabir Pun and European coordinator Hari K. Neupane, visited the MRC PPU on 13th April 2022. During their visit, Professor Gopal Sapkota, who is a principal investigator within the MRC PPU and is originally from Nepal, gave the delegation a tour of the labs and facilities and briefed them about the research that is undertaken within the MRC PPU and the School of Life Sciences.

The delegation also met with the director of MRC PPU, Professor Dario Alessi, and discussed ways in which MRC PPU could assist the National Innovation Centre (Nepal) in its research and training activities.

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