Cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5/STK9) is a poorly understood protein kinase mutated in CDKL5 disorder. This disease is characterized by seizure onset before 3 months of age, severely impaired gross motor, language and hand skills and subtle but shared physical characteristics. It is not clear why mutations in CDKL5 cause this disease, especially as the cellular processes controlled by CDKL5 remain unknown and the cellular targets of CDKL5 and the mechanisms controlling its activity are also unclear. 



Metformin has been used as a first-line drug for the treatment of individuals with type 2 diabetes for over 60 years. The mechanism by which metformin lowers glucose levels in the blood has been controversial. It has been generally accepted that it is likely the that metformin’s effects are mediated through inhibition of mitochondrial respiratory complex I, which leads to the elevation of 5′ -adenosine monophosphate (AMP) levels. …more

Dr Greg Findlay, a group leader in the Medical Research Council Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit (MRC-PPU) at the University of Dundee, has been awarded a prestigious Sir Henry Dale Fellowship from the Wellcome Trust and Royal Society.

This award provides Greg’s laboratory with 5 years funding worth £1 million that will allow him to study a newly discovered control mechanism for Embryonic Stem Cell (ESC) development that could help in the treatment of heart disease in the future.

Miratul Muqit Portrait

One of the UK’s leading researchers into Parkinson’s disease has received a major funding award to continue with his groundbreaking work.


Dr Miratul Muqit, senior researcher at the University of Dundee’s Medical Research Council Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit (MRC PPU), has been awarded £2million following the renewal of his Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellowship in Clinical Science.



Laureation address by Dario Alessi, 22nd June 2018


Vice-Chancellor, I have the honour to present for the degree of doctor of laws honoris causa, Dr Michel Goedert. Michel has undertaken pioneering studies that have made major contributions to unravelling our understanding of several brain disorders, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.



Lambert Montava Garriga, a PhD student in the Ganley Lab at the MRC PPU, was awarded the first-place poster prize at the Biochemical Society’s 83rd Harden Conference: Autophagy – from Molecules to Disease. …more

Ever wondered what the inside of a lab looks like? We’ll be hosting an open day on Saturday 16 June so please join us to explore the world of medical research.

At the MRC Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit our name may sound complicated but our aim is simple – to understand how cell regulation influences health and disease and to use what we learn to develop new medicines or technologies. Essentially we look at life from the inside out. 


Sven Lange, a PhD student in the MRC PPU has won The FEBS Journal Poster Prize at "Pseudoenzymes 2018: from molecular mechanism to cell biology" which was held on the island of Sardinia from May 16-19 2018. Sven was also invited to present a short lecture at the meeting on his research on the IRAK3 pseudokinase. …more

The CK1 family of serine/threonine protein kinases were one of the first kinases to be discovered some 50 years ago, principally because of their incessant ability to phosphorylate the milk protein casein in the test tube. Although it has turned out that this is not their actual role in biology, they have been found to impact many cellular processes, including the cell’s ability to grow, differentiate and respond to different signals. CK1 members can control all of these processes by their ability to phosphorylate many effector proteins in different subcellular compartments within the cell. …more

David Campbell, head of the MRC PPU’s Mass Spectrometry Facility, is retiring 34 years after joining Philip Cohen’s lab as a postdoc in 1984. …more