Our Science

Here is a brief description of our work. For a full description of cell biology and how our work is based on these principles click on

Full Description

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A' living hings kent oan earth ur made o' cells. Mony microbes, anaw bacteria 'n' yeasts, ur single cell organisms. Mair complex organisms, anaw plants, insects 'n' animals, comprise lairge numbers o' cells workin' in concert. Ilka living cell haes a genome made o' th' lang 'n' gey malinky polymer cried dna. Wi`in th' cell th' dna molecule is packaged wi' proteins tae form yin or mair chromosomes. In th' mair complex types o' cells, cried ‘eukaryotes’, th' chromosomes ur kept in a specialized internal compartment cried th' nucleus.

The chromosomes ur arrays o' genes, linked th'gither lik' beads oan a necklace. Ilk gene corresponds tae a segment o' dna 'n' maist o' thae genes gie th' instructions tae specify howfur th' cell kin assemble th' different types o' proteins thay require fur lee. Proteins ur an' a' polymers. They're made o' subunits cried amino acids, whilk ur linked th'gither tae form lang chains. Proteins ur made o' twenty different types o' amino acids. Thae kin be linked th'gither in different combinations 'n' forming chains o' varying lengths, makin a huge batch o' different types o' proteins wi' varied properties. Some proteins form mechanical structures, sic as muscle. Ither types o' proteins include enzymes that speed up 'n' control th' mony chemical reactions that keep th' cell alive. Thae chemical reactions ur collectively cried metabolism 'n' include th' generation o' energy wi`in cells thro' th' pure burnin` o' sugars 'n' ither chemical forms o' fuel - better kent as food.

Cell proteins ur th' hings tae aim fur o' maist gear 'n' medicines used tae treat disease. Maist medicines ur thus external chemical signals used tae alter yin or mair o' th' proteins encoded by th' cell genes. In some cases th' gear themselves, sic as insulin, ur an' a' proteins. Th' antibodies yer body mak's tae combat infection ur an' a' types o' protein.

Within an organism, ilka cell has th' identical genome - i.e. Th' complete set o' genes tae mak' a' o' th' different types o' proteins. However, nae a' genes ur active, either in ilka cell, or at th' identical time. Fur example, some types o' proteins ur ainlie made in brain cells (neurons) 'n' nae in skin cells. Some proteins ur ainlie made whin cells ur fast as fuck dividing. Thae ur examples o' gene regulation, whilk is a gey complex process that kin operate in mony different ways. Whin a gene is active, we say it's expressed. Differences in th' patterns 'n' levels o' face fur th' mony thoosans o' different genes wi`in cells explain differences in size, shape 'n' behaviour atween different types o' cells. Wi`in a specific type o' cell, however, gene face an' a' changes ower time 'n' responds tae mony different signals fae th' environment, sic as internal chemical messengers, cried hormones 'n' external signals, anaw forms o' stress.

Genes kin be fucked, leadin` either tae th' failure tae produce th' required protein, or tae th' production o' an wrang protein structure - thae types o' gene damage ur cried mutations. Mony forms o' disease, anaw maist forms o' cancer, kin arise thro' damage tae yin or mair genes. Sic damage tae th' genes kin be caused either by chemicals in th' environment (mutagens), by smoking or by exposure tae radiation. Some altered forms o' genes kin be passed fae parents tae bairns (inherited), leadin` tae genetic disorders.

Our research studies howfur th' face o' genes is controlled in human cells. We an' a' study simpler cells, sic as they in nematode worms, fur this mak's certain types o' experiments easier tae perform. We uise a wide range o' technologies tae detect 'n' measure cell proteins, an approach cried ‘proteomics’. We study whilk cell proteins ur produced in baith healthy cells 'n' cancer cells 'n' whilk factors affect thair production 'n' activity. We an' a' uise sophisticated microscopes tae observe human cells 'n' nematodes 'n' tae record howfur thay shift, divide 'n' chaynge ower time in response tae gear 'n' ither signals. We uise baith mass spectrometers (complex instruments fur detecting 'n' weighing molecules) 'n' microscopes tae detect howfur proteins ur organised atween different compartments wi`in cells. A' o' thae experiments generate lairge amounts o' data, whilk we mist analyse, visualize 'n' hain. We uise a range o' advanced computers 'n' develop freish software tae hulp us analyze 'n' share thae lairge sets o' data.

We gab oor findings 'n' share oor data wi' ither researchers thro' scientific publications, via online databases 'n' by giein' lectures 'n' seminars. Further speirins oan a' o' oor activities kin be fun throo'oot this web hingy.

Oor research studies howfur th' face o' genes is controlled in human cells. We an' a' study simpler cells, sic as they in nematode worms, fur this mak's certain types o' experiments easier tae perform. We uise a wide range o' technologies tae detect 'n' measure cell proteins, an approach cried ‘proteomics’. We study whilk cell proteins ur produced in baith healthy cells 'n' cancer cells 'n' whilk factors affect thair production 'n' activity. We an' a' uise sophisticated microscopes tae observe human cells 'n' nematodes 'n' tae record howfur thay shift, divide 'n' chaynge ower time in response tae gear 'n' ither signals. We uise baith mass spectrometers (complex instruments fur detecting 'n' weighing molecules) 'n' microscopes tae detect howfur proteins ur organised atween different compartments wi`in cells. A' o' thae experiments generate lairge amounts o' data, whilk we mist analyse, visualize 'n' hain. We uise a range o' advanced computers 'n' develop freish software tae hulp us analyze 'n' share thae lairge sets o' data.

We gab oor findings 'n' share oor data wi' ither researchers thro' scientific publications, via online databases 'n' by giein' lectures 'n' seminars. Further speirins oan a' o' oor activities kin be fun throo'oot this web hingy.









PepTracker
PepTracker provides management and mining capabilities for data generated during mass spectrometry studies.
Data Shop
Visualisation and statistical analysis tool for quantitative datasets
Proteomics Support
The Proteomics Support team have created a website that provides useful resources for proteomics studies.
Encyclopedia of Proteome Dynamics
A collection of multi-dimensional proteome properties from large-scale mass spectrometry experiments
Cell Biologist's Guide
The Cell Biologist's Guide to Proteomics provides information about mass spectrometry and experimentation.