Congratulations to Megan McFie who has passed her PhD identifying drugs that regulate primary cilia in cartilage cells

24 May 2022

Megan McFie
Megan McFie

Megan has successfully completed her PhD which examined the effect of pharmaceutical compounds on primary cilia - solitary hair-like structures found on most cell type. Her PhD was part of a multidisciplinary collaboration between Prof Martin Knight and Dr Cleo Bishop.

Primary cilia are known to coordinate a variety of important aspects of cell biology including the ability of living cells to sense and respond to mechanical forces. Changes in the prevalence or length of primary cilia may alter cell function with important consequences for health and disease.

The aim of Megan’s thesis was to identify existing drugs which alter primary cilia and may potentially be used to treat an expanding variety of conditions associated with disruption of cilia. Megan successfully examined over 1,700 therapeutic compounds using high-throughput confocal microscopy with robotic liquid handling.

Following her PhD, Megan completed a Proof of Concept study funded by Queen Mary Innovations, in which she investigated the potential of cilia modulating compounds to treat the rare genetic disease, Jeune Syndrome.

Megan will be starting a new job at a biotechnology start-up company.

Contact:Martin Knight

Updated by: Martin Knight