Postdoctoral Research Scientist
My research concentrates on regulatory pathways that control the formation of vascular and lymphatic endothelial cells during embryogenesis. Endothelial cells, lining the inner surface of all blood and lymphatic vessels, are specified by different signalling pathways. By examining gene enhancers, cis-regulatory elements in the genome activating transcriptional regulation, the different signalling pathways can be identified. This has led to identification of the BMP pathway specifying vein formation. I am currently investigating sox18 enhancers for involvement in lymphatic specification.
Zebrafish is one of our primary model systems to elucidate regulatory pathways. I have in-depth experience in working with zebrafish as a model system and use this system to test regulatory elements; for example, by producing both transient and stable fluorescent zebrafish lines.
I am funded by the De Val lab Medical Research Council project grant and the De Val lab British Heart Foundation Senior Fellowship.
ETS factors are required but not sufficient for specific patterns of enhancer activity in different endothelial subtypes.
Neal A. et al, (2021), Dev Biol