University of Dundee

Cell and Developmental Biology

Short Code: 

"Investigating how mechanical forces control cell divisions: from the Drosophila epithelium to migrating neural crest cells"

I did my PhD with Roberto Mayor at UCL, where my main project showed how a switch between E- and N- Cadherin drives the acquisition of contact inhibition of locomotion and leads to the redistribution of forces from intercellular junctions to cell-matrix adhesions in Xenopus and Zebrafish neural crest cells (Scarpa et al., Dev Cell 2015, 

Welcome to new group leaders

The School has welcomed three new group leaders in recent months. They are currently establishing their laboratories across three of our divisions. Leeanne McGurk has joined the Division of Cell and Developmental Biology, Megan Bergkessel has joined the Division of Molecular Microbiology while Gabriel Sollberger has joined the Division of Cell Signalling and Immunology.

Leeanne McGurk

Leeanne joins the School from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia where she was a postdoctoral research associate in the laboratory of Nancy Bonini.  

CSC - Structural and membrane biology of polarized trafficking

Membranes and their protein organization are a frontier in our understanding of cell biology. We focus on polarized trafficking as a model to uncover fundamental mechanisms in the organization of structures at membranes. We aim to understand the role of protein complexes including the exocyst. This project seeks to answer mechanistic questions regarding 1) the regulation of protein structural mechanics in polarized trafficking, 2) and the consequences of signaling on this pathway and its organization.