Committee

The Society is run by a committee of research scientists and group leaders from all over the UK.
Any suggestions for consideration by the Committee should be submitted to info@ukcelladhesion.org

Dr Ann Ager
Chair
Cardiff Institute of Infection & Immunity
Henry Wellcome Building
Heath Park
Cardiff, CF14 4XN, UK
http://medicine.cf.ac.uk/person/ann-ager/
AgerA@cf.ac.uk

The Ager lab studies how leucocyte trafficking protects against infection, fights cancer and regulates neurodegeneration. A major focus is the regulation of L-selectin expression on T lymphocytes and its impact on physiological and pathological T cell trafficking via specialised high endothelial venule (HEV) blood vessels. Recent studies have revealed an essential role for L-selectin in the recruitment of killer T cells into flu-infected lungs for virus clearance. Current studies are exploring whether manipulating L-selectin on cancer-killing T lymphocytes, such as CAR-T cells, increases their ability to seek out and destroy solid cancers.

Dr Patric Turowski
Deputy Chair
Institute of Ophthalmology
Faculty of Brain Sciences
University College London
Bath Street
London, EC1V 9EL, UK
https://iris.ucl.ac.uk
p.turowski@ucl.ac.uk

Dr Victoria C Ridger

Treasurer
Department of Cardiovascular Science
University of Sheffield
Medical School
Beech Hill Road
Sheffield, S10 2RX, UK
http://www.shef.ac.uk
v.c.ridger@sheffield.ac.uk

The group’s research interests are in elucidating the role of neutrophils in vascular inflammation through the production of microvesicles. The lab found that these membrane-derived sacs express adhesion molecules on their surface and contain proteins, RNA and microRNA and are able to adhere to endothelial cells, particularly at sites of inflammation. Once adherent, microvesicles are then internalised and can deliver their contents. The group are using a multitude of techniques to investigate the role of neutrophil microvesicles in vascular inflammation. Currently, they are investigating if neutrophil microvesciles play a role in diseases including atherosclerosis, neurodegeneration and COPD.

Dr Helen McGettrick

Sponsorship manager
School of Immunity and Infection
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham, B15 2TT, UK
http://www.birmingham.ac.uk
h.m.mcgettrick@bham.ac.uk

Helen completed her PhD in Medical Sciences 2006, followed by 3 postdoctoral research positions at the University of Birmingham. She was appointed as a University Fellow in Inflammation Biology in 2011, and a year later successfully won a five year Arthritis Research UK Career Development Fellowship. She was recently awarded the prestigious “Garrod Prizeby the British Society for Rheumatology in 2016. She is also an Honorary Lecturer at the University of Glasgow and Newcastle University (UK), and has actively been involved in the UK Cell Adhesion Society since 2011. Her research focuses on identifying the endogenous regulatory pathways that control the recruitment of the inflammatory infiltration during an acute inflammatory episode, and how these go wrong in immune mediated inflammatory diseases. Her team has two main areas of interest: (i) mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC) crosstalk with vascular endothelial cells and (ii) the adiponectin-PEPITEM axis in arthritis. They combine imaging novel in vitro, multi-cellular static and flow-based culture systems incorporating primary human cells (from healthy individuals or patients), with systems biology approaches to large omics datasets and murine models of acute or persistent inflammation.

Dr Mathieu-Benoit Voisin
Website manager
Centre for Microvascular Research,
William Harvey Research Institute,
Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry
Queen Mary University of London
Charterhouse Square
London, EC1M 6BQ, UK
http://www.whri.qmul.ac.uk
m.b.voisin@qmul.ac.uk

 

Dr Sonja Vermeren
MRC Centre for Inflammation Research
University of Edinburgh
The Queen’s Medical Research Institute,
47 Little France Crescent,
Edinburgh, EH16 4TJ, UK
http://www.cir.ed.ac.uk
sonja.vermeren@ed.ac.uk

 

Sonja’s lab are interested in neutrophilic inflammation and how this regulated by cellular signalling in both the neutrophil and endothelial cells. In particular, the group are analysing cross-talk between PI3K and small GTPases following adhesion-dependent stimulation induced by integrins and by FcgRs both in vitro and in vivo.

Post-doc Representatives

Dr Bonita Apta (Junior Post-doc)
Membership Secretary
University of Cambridge
ba367@cam.ac.uk

 

 

 

Dr Myriam Chimen (Senior Post-Doc)
Public Relations Secretary
University of Birmingham
m.chimen@bham.ac.uk

 

 

 

Dr Myriam Chimen has been awarded a 5-year Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Research Fellowship to investigate the glucocorticoid regulation of a novel pathway controlling T-cell trafficking in chronic inflammatory diseases and ageing. Myriam PhD studies lead to the discovery of a novel peptide inhibitor of trans-endothelial migration (PEPITEM) and she characterised this novel pathway in health and patients with chronic inflammatory diseases. She continued her postdoctoral training at the University of Birmingham on the characterisation of foam cell formation in atherosclerosis. She is part of the Leukocyte Trafficking group and her lab focuses on understanding how immune regulatory pathways controlling leukocyte trafficking change with age and chronic inflammation.

Dr Angharad Watson (Senior Post-Doc)
Social Media Advisor
University of Cardiff.
media@ukcelladhesion.org


 

 

While an undergraduate at Oxford, Angharad started a project investigating haematopoietic stem cell migration, which led to a PhD at the University of Manchester, under the supervision of Dr Brian Bigger. Her PhD focused on the role of accumulated abnormal heparan sulphate in stem cell migration in patients suffering from Mucopolysaccharidosis. Following a short KTP fellowship with Orla Protein Technologies and Dr Cathy Merry engineering novel glycosaminoglycan binding proteins, Angharad moved to Cardiff University, to join the research team of Dr Ann Ager. Her research to date has focused on the manipulation of T cells to improve adoptive cell therapy outcomes in solid tumours, with an emphasis on the role of the homing and adhesion molecule L-selectin. Along the way, she has also been active in public engagement, developing the Life Sciences Challenge for year 10 students in Wales. Most recently, she has taken part in the first GW4 Crucible in 2017, with the theme “Healthy Living”.

Student Representative

Anna Barkaway (PhD Student)
Website advisor
William Harvey Research Institute, QMUL, London
a.l.barkaway@qmul.ac.uk

 

 

 

 

Emeritus committee members

Prof Sussan Nourshargh
Centre for Microvascular Research
William Harvey Research Institute
Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry
Queen Mary, University of London
Charterhouse Square
London, EC1M 6BQ, UK
www.whri.qmul.ac.uk
s.nourshargh@qmul.ac.uk

 

Prof Ed Rainger
School of Clinical and Experimental Medicine
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham, B15 2TT, UK
www.birmingham.ac.uk
g.e.rainger@bham.ac.uk

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